Yearning for the Impossible: The Surprising Truths of Mathematics

Yearning for the Impossible: The Surprising Truths of Mathematics

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by John C. Stillwell
     
 

ISBN-10: 156881254X

ISBN-13: 9781568812540

Pub. Date: 06/15/2006

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

This book explores the history of mathematics from the perspective of the creative tension between common sense and the "impossible" as the author follows the discovery or invention of new concepts that have marked mathematical progress: - Irrational and Imaginary Numbers - The Fourth Dimension - Curved Space - Infinity and others The author puts these

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Overview

This book explores the history of mathematics from the perspective of the creative tension between common sense and the "impossible" as the author follows the discovery or invention of new concepts that have marked mathematical progress: - Irrational and Imaginary Numbers - The Fourth Dimension - Curved Space - Infinity and others The author puts these creations into a broader context involving related "impossibilities" from art, literature, philosophy, and physics. By imbedding mathematics into a broader cultural context and through his clever and enthusiastic explication of mathematical ideas the author broadens the horizon of students beyond the narrow confines of rote memorization and engages those who are curious about the place of mathematics in our intellectual landscape.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781568812540
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
06/15/2006
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
244
Sales rank:
519,925
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

1The irrational1
2The imaginary25
3The horizon47
4The infinitesimal77
5Curved space101
6The fourth dimension129
7The ideal155
8Periodic space177
9The infinite197

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Yearning for the Impossible: The Surprising Truths of Mathematics 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Mathematics professor John Stillwell (University of San Francisco) presents Yearning For The Impossible: The Surprising Truth Of Mathematics, a fascinating tour through the history of mathematics and the resounding impact new conceptual discoveries have made upon human civilization. Mathematical achievements such as concepts of irrational numbers, imaginary numbers, the infinitesimal, the fourth dimension, periodic space, and more are explored in terms accessible to lay readers, and their intersection with art, literature, philosophy, and physics among other disciplines is laid bare. Yearning For The Impossible is as much of a celebration of the greater understanding mathematics has brought to the world as it is a history and discussion of innovative concepts, and is highly recommended for library and personal reading shelves.