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In Small Doses

In Small Doses
title In Small Doses
subtitle Against Withdrawal from Mathematics
Publisher Raffaello Cortina Editore
libro Book
Language Italian
Published on 10/2023
ISBN 9788832855685ENG

The numbers, theorems and theories examined in this book belong to the realm of pure mathematics, speculative concepts that engage mathematicians regardless of whether they lead to practical applications. This is the most fascinating kind of math, the only discipline truly free to explore imaginary worlds - indeed, perhaps the most original creation of the human mind. The study of integers, for example, is still only partly explored. Though easy to describe, its many problems are exceedingly difficult to resolve, like Fermat's latest theorem. "Mathematics is like war", writes the author. "You surround areas you can't manage to take, but at the same time, open up new fronts before securing the previous ones."
For the outsider, pure mathematics is a leap in the dark. Yet the author succeeds in describing the discipline for what it really is: the fascinating story of human creativity, from Pythagoras and Homer through to Escher, Nabokov, and Bertrand Russell - the ultimate expression of our capacity for free thinking; an exploration of the limits of reason.


Author biography

Piergiorgio Odifreddi has studied mathematics in Italy, the United States and in the Soviet Union; he has taught Mathematical Logic at the University of Turin and the Cornell University of New York.

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