The Mystery of the Aleph: Mathematics, the Kabbalah, and the Search for Infinity

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Simon and Schuster, Aug 28, 2001 - Biography & Autobiography - 272 pages
3 Reviews
From the end of the nineteenth century until his death, one of history's greatest mathematicians languished in an asylum, driven mad by an almost Faustian thirst for universal knowledge. THE MYSTERY OF THE ALEPH tells the story of Georg Cantor (1845-1918), a Russian born German whose work on the 'continuum problem' would bring us closer than any mathemetician before him in helping us to comprehend the nature of infinity. A respected mathematician himself, Dr. Aczel follows Cantor's life and traces the roots of his enigmatic theories. From the Pythagoreans, the Greek cult of mathematics, to the mystical Jewish numerology found in the Kabbalah, THE MYSTERY OF THE ALEPH follows the search for an answer that may never truly be trusted.
 

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This is a book I wish I had read while taking math classes in my undergraduate degree. It puts all the technical results in the context of the great human scientific achievement.

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Attentive reading will reveal the serious lacunae in the authors history of mathematics

Contents

Ancient Roots
11
Kabbalah z 5
45
Virulent Opposition
131
Appendix
229
JWex
249
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About the author (2001)

Amir D. Aczel is the bestselling author of ten books, including Entanglement, The Riddle of the Compass, The Mystery of the Aleph, and Fermat's Last Theorem. He lives in Brookline, Massachusetts.

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