Ходжа Н. (hojja_nusreddin) wrote,
Ходжа Н.
hojja_nusreddin

Russian Religious Mystics and French Rationalists: Mathematics, 1900–1930


When a mathematician created a set by naming it, he was giving a birth to a new mathematical being

- The naming of sets was a mathematical act, just as the naming of G-d was a religious one
- I've never suspected that neo-Nominalism played such a prominent role in the emergence of the Moscow School of Mathematics

The thesis of this article is that French mathematicians (Lebesgue, Borel, Baire, Du Bois-Reymond, Brouwer) being
Carthesians, believed that

- if one cannot think of an object, it cannot exist
- (if one cannot imagine transfinite numbers, these do not exist).

But Imyaslav mathematicians in Russia believed that

- by naming a mathematical object it automatically comes into existence, and
- so they were fully open to German advances in the set theory.
- They had no conceptual problem with, say, proving the existence of an object that cannot be properly defined.
- Their open mind allowed Egorov and Luzin to found a new school of mathematics.

____________________________
By Loren Graham and Jean-Michel Kantor
http://www.amacad.org/publications/bulletin/spring2005/graham.pdf
Tags: математика, мистик, москва, религия, россия, франция, школа
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