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1999 - 2000 MINICALENDAR
 Faculty of Arts
 Faculty of Pure and Applied Science

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AS/SC/ MATH 4400 6.0

The History of Mathematics

      Selected topics in the history of mathematics, discussed in full technical detail but with stress on the underlying ideas, their evolution and their context.
      The course will trace the evolution of various areas of mathematics, such as analysis, algebra, and geometry. While it will involve a great deal of technical mathematics, the course will also explore issues closely bound up with its progress, such as the changing standards of rigor in mathematics, the cultural context of mathematics, the roles of problems and crises in the development of mathematics, and the roles of intuition and logic in its development.
      Students will be expected to write a major paper depicting the evolution of a given problem, general principle, concept, or subfield of mathematics; for example, function, the real numbers, distribution of primes, the arithmetization of analysis, fashions in mathematics, the rise of rigorous proof, or Fermat's Last Theorem.
      The course will not follow a prescribed text, but the following book is recommended: V.J. Katz, A History of Mathematics (2nd Ed.), Addison-Wesley, 1998. Many references, on various topics, will be given in class.
      The final grade will be based on a major paper (20%), other assignments (30%), two tests (20%), and a final exam (30%).

Prerequisite:36 credits from MATH courses without second digit 5, including at least 12 credits at or above the 3000 level. (12 of the 36 credits may be taken as corequisites.)

Coordinator: Israel Kleiner

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