Item description for Gnomes in the Fog: The Reception of Brouwer's Intuitionism in the 1920s (Science Networks. Historical Studies, 28) by Dennis E. Hesseling...
The significance of foundational debate in mathematics that took place in the 1920s seems to have been recognized only in circles of mathematicians and philosophers. A period in the history of mathematics when mathematics and philosophy, usually so far away from each other, seemed to meet. The foundational debate is presented with all its brilliant contributions and its shortcomings, its new ideas and its misunderstandings.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 7" Height: 10.5" Weight: 2.16 lbs.
Release Date May 27, 2004
Publisher Birkhäuser Basel
ISBN 3764365366 ISBN13 9783764365363
Reviews - What do customers think about Gnomes in the Fog: The Reception of Brouwer's Intuitionism in the 1920s (Science Networks. Historical Studies, 28)?
fascinating and excellent book Jun 18, 2008
This is a unique, thorough, and excellent treatment of the reception of intuitionist mathematics and philosophy of mathematics. It presents the views of the semi-intuitionists such as Kronecker and Poincare. It extensively discusses the various foundational debates and opinions of intutionism by various mathematicians,including several less well known ones, but it goes far beyond that. For instance, it includes parallels to similar currents such as constructivism in art to the popularity of appeals to "constructivism" by not only the mathematical intuitionists, but by the formalist Hilbert and the logicist Carnap. Also mentioned is the case of a high school text of the period that included some discussion of intuitionist mathematics. It also discusses parallels between Weyl's defense of intuitionism and Spengler's "Decline of the West" and the influences of Brouwer on Wittgenstein. This is all and all a fascinating book. It doesn't develop the conceptual points as far as it might, but it lays out numerous suggestions and alternative accounts of the relation of mathematical intuitionism to lebensphilosophie, Weimar culture and other cultural currents of the time.