Geometry Civilized: History, Culture, and Technique

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Clarendon Press, 2000 - 309 páginas
Geometry Civilized is a unique combination of history and mathematics. It contains a full introduction to plane geometry and trigonometry within a fascinating historical framework that sets off the technical material. This approach to geometrical ideas gives the book its unique, readablestyle. The author has included a wide range of unusual and engaging geometric problems, many of which are taken from practical applications, drawn from sources ranging from ancient to modern. The study of geometry has been an important element of education in Europe since the time of the Greeks.This book helps us to understand why such emphasis has been placed on obtaining a good understanding of geometry. But the history presented here is not confined to the Western tradition. Examples drawn from other cultures, particularly Chinese and Indian, underscore the peculiarities of thegeometry we have inherited from the Greeks, and thereby make Euclid's approach more accessible. Book reviews from the hardback: 'He has written a marvellous tale of how, throughout much of recorded history, geometrical thinking and civilisation have been closely intertwined. ...Definitely a bookto dip into and reflect on a superior form of brainfood for the beach this summer perhaps? Heilbron's enthusiasm is contagious.' Ian Stewart, New Scientist 'The book is wonderfully illustrated. There are diagrams on almost every page, apt illustrations from older books, and well chosenphotographs, together with eight colour plates. The appearance of the book is quite seductive, for which Oxford University Press should be congratulated.' Jeremy Gray, Nature 'This is a handsome book, well researched and entertainingly written. It shows how powerfully a historically informedaccount can communicate. If you thought Euclidean geometry was something only your great-grandparents did - try it, you will be surprised.' BJune Barrow-Green, The TIMES Higher Education Supplement
 

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Contenido

From points to proof
49
Tricks with triangles
84
Many cheerful facts about the square of the hypotenuse
143
From polygons to pi
189
Tough knots
269
Bibliography
297
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Acerca del autor (2000)

John L Heilbron, MA, PhD, April House, Shilton, Burford, OX18 4AB Telephone/fax: (01993) 840830

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