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3 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Opinionated, entertaining, informative and riveting, 6. Mai 2000
Von 
Mike Christie (Cold Spring Harbor, NY, USA) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
This book has entertained, educated and intrigued two generations of young aspiring mathematicians, as well as people who would never grow up to do research mathematics, but who could see the beauty of number. Bell's style is addictive; he makes every personality come to life--from Galois, brilliant, unlucky and doomed, to Gauss, the "Prince of Mathematicians", to Pascal, mystical and tormented. No one who reads this book can forget, for example, the section entitled "Galois' last night", where, the night before Galois knows he will die, he spends "the fleeting hours feverishly dashing off his last will and testament, writing against time to glean a few of the great things in his teeming mind before the death which he foresaw could overtake him. Time after time he broke off to scribble in the margin 'I have not time; I have not time,' and passed on to the next frantically scrawled outline."
Which is sad, in a way, because it is, according to modern accounts of Galois' life, not accurate. The work Bell is describing was written before his last night, in no such hurry. This has been known for some time, and yet few who know, and who perhaps should know better, will relinquish their affection for this marvellous book. It so captures the enthusiasm one can feel for the beauty and poetry that mathematics brings to the mind that errors of fact are minor flaws.
And the errors are few enough that they really don't matter. In Galois' case, for example, one takes away a deeply etched portrait of an astonishing mind that descended on revolutionary France like a meteorite, and which had about as much chance of being understood. This is accurate, and Bell tells his stories so powerfully that they stay in the mind--for decades, in my case and that of others I know who have read him.
Bell includes many wonderful quotes and stories. The whole first section of the book is just a series of quotes--my favourite is perhaps Weierstrass, "A mathematician who is not also something of a poet will never be a complete mathematician." But he lards the book with quotes, and since this book can profitably be read by an enthusiastic 12-year-old, and often has been, for many people this book is the first time they will meet with such famous quotes as Newton's line about being merely a child, playing with pretty pebbles on the seashore.
Bell claims that the book is not a history of mathematics, and he's right. It's a series of chapters that provide biographical--and mathematical--sketches of thirty-odd great mathematicians, from Archimedes to Cantor. You'll learn a lot about the history of mathematics from this book, but mostly you'll be infected by the passionate enthusiasm of someone who knows and loves his subject. Buy it; read it; if you love mathematics you won't regret it.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Disappointment/Delight, 13. April 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
My father gave me this book when I was 9 years old, shortly after it was first published in 1937. I was a very disappointed child to receive a present I could barely read, let alone understand. Of course, I read this book when I was older and able to appreciate it as my father, no doubt, originally intended. The chapter that affected me the most was the one on Cantor, the last chapter in the book incidentally, and his horribly abusive treatment by Kronecker. His death in a mental instution in January 1918, was sad, indeed; despite the fact he was then 73 years old. It was no way for such a genius to be dishonored. There's little more I can add to what has already been said by others possessing the gift of eloquence. Since this book has been continually in print for the past 53 years, I suspect it will still be in print long after many of us are gone. I still re-read chapters of it from time to time; always enjoyable.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A very good, well written book about men of math....., 4. November 1999
Von 
Leo J. Landkamer (Ocean Shores, WA United States) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
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Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
This is an excellent book. It is a book I had not really thought of for some years. Several days ago I was in the Pacific Beach Library ( San Diego) and a young girl with her mother (I assumed) asked the research person for a book about persons who had influenced math...Nothing seemed to turn up re that search and I could not resist saying " Men of Mathematics " ...that is such a book. They did not have it.....they have a whole bunch of "Dummie Books", but very few real books. I went home to check at Amazon.com to see if the book was available and was quite surprised to see that a San Diego person had submitted a recent review. Interesting...perhaps Amazon.com may be a way to suggest worthwhile books to the people who buy books for our public library.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent amalgam of history, biography and math geniuses, 31. Oktober 1999
Von 
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
I first read this book when I was thirteen years old, from the public library. I found it engrossing and never forgot the title and author. Now sixty years later I have my own copy and have enjoyed it even more - basically because the math that went over my head then sticks a little more after college math, also many years ago, in science and engineering. I expected to find many anachronisms in a book published that long ago, but apart from prescient references to the upcoming World War II, it could have been written now. Of course the subject matter does not date. The style of writing flows very smoothly and holds the attention of the reader. This book will be enjoyed most by those who enjoy, or have enjoyed doing math. It has some relatively elementary math presentation for those who want to dust off their gray matter and try to follow. But this is not essential. The lives of the math geniuses of the centuries are of a fascinating variety. All these years I could not remember which one, at the age of twenty one was shot in a stupid duel and left to die at the side of the road. Now I know.
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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Contagious passion for mathematics. Beware!, 25. Juli 1998
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
Eric Temple Bell was a fine mathematician on his own. And he could write, also."Men of Mathematics" is a great book and probably a perennial one. I read it first almost 50 years ago, in a Spanish translation. I was immediately fascinated. It obviously influenced me, as, later, on the brink of entering the university, I decided to change from medicine to mathematical physics. The chapters had charming titles: the one that talked about Cayley and Sylvester was called Invariant Twins (Gemelos Invariantes); the one on Galois, "Genius and Tragedy". Now I have the last edition, and the titles are all there. At the time of my first reading the men which impressed me more were Gauss (unforgetable chapter), Riemann (very moving), Galois and, of course, Newton. Recently I read some comments on his chapter on Riemann, considered overly romanticized. Who cares?
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Highly entertaining stories. Brilliant, hilarious style, 29. Juni 2000
Von 
Stephen Mark (Brooklyn, NY USA) - Alle meine Rezensionen ansehen
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Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
Men of Mathematics is one of my favorite books. These mini-biographies of the greatest mathematicians give a concise version of their lives and a pretty thorough lay description of their contributions. Dryish material in the hands of most authors, but highly dramatic stuff for Bell, a florid writer with an intense love for math and scant tolerance for other pursuits. His opinions are so firm and his reasoning so quick and sure that contemporary academic or historical writing seems tepid and mushy by comparison. The genetic source of the brilliant mathematical ability is the first order of business in the biographical formula. With the scholarly ancestor or uncle located, we move on to the educational drama, where tension is derived from the obstacles, such as idiot examiners, poetry, women, drink, that lie between the subject and mathematical greatness. Bell is outraged by the amount of time little boy William Hamilton wastes learning Oriental languages and human-calculator type parlor tricks, rather than focusing on real mathematics. The author's opinionated interpretations are not that unreasonable and his rich style is entertaining though ludicrous. In spite of the snide amusement you may derive from the language and the author's unexamined biases, his rendering of the drama behind twenty truly brilliant careers can really be quite moving. The chapter on Galois is a classic. You'll laugh; you'll cry.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen A look at mathematicians for who they really were., 29. Februar 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
In this book, Bell provides the reader with an engaging look into the personal lives of many great mathematicians. While most mathematical biographies focus mainly on the individual's work, Men of Mathematics pays special attention to the lifestyles and life stories of some of the math greats. Mathematical contributions of the men are not downplayed, they are just presented in the context of their social and private lives and of the society in which they lived. For these reasons, Men of Mathematics has become one of my favorite pieces of biographical literature.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Manchmal etwas kompliziert aber gut, 13. Januar 2000
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
Man sollte schon eine wenig Ahnung von Mathematik haben, um alles in diesem Buch zu verstehen, vielleicht ein Grundkurs bis zum Abitur, da nicht immer alle Probleme mit denen sich die grossen Mathematiker beschaeftigt haben von Eric Bell ganz verstaendlich erklaert werden (dafuer werden Schreibweisen und Rechenreglen immer erkaert). Aber mit einen wenig Nachdenken kommt man schon dahinter. Aber selbst wenn man die Probleme und Spielereien, der grossen Genies nicht immer verseht, bleibt dieses Buch immer noch verdammt gut und spanned zu lesen, da nicht alle Mathematiker langweilige Stubenhocker waren, wie man eindruckvoll vermittelt bekommt. Fuer jeden der auch nur das allergeringste Interesse an Mathematik hat, ist das Buch waermstens zu empfehlen! Denn, auch wenn amn es kaum glaubt, Mathe kan spannend sein! (Dies ist eine Amazon.de an der Uni-Studentenrezension.)
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Wonderful book, 4. Juni 1999
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
This is a fine book, highly recommended. I found it because it was mentioned in Sylvia Nasar's "A Beautiful Mind" (another good book, BTW). If it were reissued in hardback I would buy it again.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen very helpful, 5. November 1998
Von Ein Kunde
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) (Taschenbuch)
This book contains lots of information on some lesser known mathematicans. I had been assigned a research project on a mathematican named Charles Hermite, and this book contained a whole world of information.
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Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books)
Men of Mathematics (Touchstone Books) von E.T. Bell (Taschenbuch - 15. Oktober 1986)
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