You Failed Your Math Test, Comrade Einstein: Adventures and Misadventures of Young Mathematicians

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"Two essays written by well-known mathematician Ilan Vardi, who is currently living in France, constitute the book's core. The first essay presents a thorough analysis of contrived problems given to "undesirable" applicants to the Department of Mathematics, Moscow University. The second essay is an in-depth discussion of solutions to the International Mathematical Olympiad of 2000, with emphasis on the comparison of the Olympiad problems to those of the Moscow University entrance examinations." The second part of the book provides a historical background of a unique phenomenon in mathematics that flourished in the 1970s and 80s in the USSR. Specially designed math problems were not used to test students' ingenuity and creativity; rather, they served as "killer problems," to deny "undesirable" applicants access to higher education. The focus of this part of the book is the 1980 essay Intellectual Genocide by B. Kanevsky and V. Senderov, published here for the first time.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9789812563583
  • Publisher: World Scientific Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/28/2005
  • Pages: 232
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

From the editor
Mekh-Mat entrance examinations problems 3
Solutions to the year 2000 International Mathematical Olympiad 77
My role as an outsider, Ilan Vardi's epilogue 103
Intellectual genocide 110
Remarks 134
Science and totalitarianism 143
Admission to the mathematics departments in Russia in the 1970s and 1980s 152
Entrance examination to the Mekhmat 157
Free education at the highest price 171
Jewish University 183
Remembering Bella Abramovna 191
Bella Abramovna Subbotovskaya 197
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