Hidden Harmonies: The Lives and Times of the Pythagorean Theorem

Hidden Harmonies: The Lives and Times of the Pythagorean Theorem

by Ellen Kaplan, Robert Kaplan

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Overview

Hidden Harmonies: The Lives and Times of the Pythagorean Theorem by Ellen Kaplan, Robert Kaplan

A squared plus b squared equals c squared. It sounds simple, doesn't it? Yet this familiar expression opens a gateway into the riotous garden of mathematics, and sends us on a journey of exploration in the company of two inspired guides, Robert and Ellen Kaplan. With wit, verve, and clarity, they trace the life of the Pythagorean theorem, from ancient Babylon to the present, visiting along the way Leonardo da Vinci, Albert Einstein, President James Garfield, and the Freemasons-not to mention the elusive Pythagoras himself, who almost certainly did not make the statement that bears his name. As in the authors' bestselling The Nothing That Is and Chances Are..., the excitement of mathematics leaps from the pages of Hidden Harmonies.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781608193981
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA
Publication date: 09/04/2012
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 1,171,289
Product dimensions: 8.10(w) x 5.50(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Robert and Ellen Kaplan have taught mathematics to people from six to sixty, at leading independent schools and, most recently, at Harvard University. Robert Kaplan is the author of the bestselling The Nothing That Is: A Natural History of Zero, which has been translated into 10 languages, and together they wrote The Art of the Infinite and Out of the Labyrinth. Ellen Kaplan is also co-author of Chances Are: Adventures in Probability and Bozo Sapiens: Why to Err Is Human, co-written with her son Michael Kaplan. They live in Southampton, Massachusetts.

Table of Contents

An Outlook on Insights xi

Chapter 1 The Mathematician as Demigod 1

Chapter 2 Desert Virtuosi 6

Chapter 3 Through the Veil 44

Chapter 4 Rebuilding the Cosmos 63

Chapter 5 Touching the Bronze Sky 81

Chapter 6 Exuberant Life 138

Chapter 7 Number Emerges from Shape 177

Chapter 8 Living at the Limit 192

Chapter 9 The Deep Point of the Dream 224

Chapter 10 Magic Casements 254

Afterword Reaching Ihrough-or Past-History? 262

Acknowledgments 265

Notes 267

Selected Bibliography 277

Index 281

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Hidden Harmonies: The Lives and Times of the Pythagorean Theorem 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Charles Gerheim More than 1 year ago
For anyone interested in Mathematics, at sny level, the Pythagorian Theorem is ubiquitous, to say the least. I was surprised to learn that Pythagoras was a Johnny-come-lately in the right triangle game. I was also surprised at the story of a Cleveland Geometry teacher who devised about 300 different proofs for the Theorem. He taught at a Cleveland high school at the turn of the century. Now, a century later, I'm teaching Geometry at the same school. The book is loaded with surprises. By all means - read it
David Eppelsheimer More than 1 year ago
Very well written. Quick and fascinating read