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Throughout history, application rather than abstraction has been the prominent driving force in mathematics. From the compass and sextant to partial differential equations, mathematical advances were spurred by the desire for better navigation tools, weaponry, and construction methods. But the religious upheaval in Victorian England and the fledgling United States opened the way for the rediscovery of pure mathematics, a tradition rooted in Ancient Greece. In Equations from God, Daniel J. Cohen captures the origins of the rebirth of abstract mathematics in the intellectual quest to rise above common existence and touch the mind of the deity. Using an array of published and private sources, Cohen shows how philosophers and mathematicians seized upon the beautiful simplicity inherent in mathematical laws to reconnect with the divine and traces the route by which the divinely inspired mathematics of the Victorian era begot later secular philosophies.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Frontmatter
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  1. Contents
  2. p. vii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. INTRODUCTION: The Allure of Pure Mathematics in the Victorian Age
  2. pp. 1-13
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  1. CHAPTER ONE: Heavenly Symbols: Sources of Victorian Mathematical Idealism
  2. pp. 14-41
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  1. CHAPTER TWO: God and Math at Harvard: Benjamin Peirce and the Divinity of Mathematics
  2. pp. 42-76
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  1. CHAPTER THREE: George Boole and the Genesis of Symbolic Logic
  2. pp. 77-105
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  1. CHAPTER FOUR: Augustus De Morgan and the Logic of Relations
  2. pp. 106-136
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  1. CHAPTER FIVE: Earthly Calculations:Mathematics and Professionalism in the Late Nineteenth Century
  2. pp. 137-182
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 183-214
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 215-234
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 235-242
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780801891861
Print ISBN
9780801885532
MARC Record
OCLC
300052307
Pages
256
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
N
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