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lloyd
Posts:
639
Registered:
12/7/04


Re: Skepticism, mysticism, Jewish mathematics
Posted:
Jul 26, 2006 8:47 AM


"herbzet" <herbzet@yahoo.com> wrote in message news:1153907813.973524.14970@i42g2000cwa.googlegroups.com... > > > david petry wrote: >> > [...] >> > > I ran a search on your post. I couldn't find the string "Jew" or > "Jewish" anywhere in the article except for the title, and the > crossposting to soc.culture.jewish. > > 1) What does your article have to do with "Jewish mathematics"? > > 2) What is Jewish mathematics? > > 3) While we're on the subject, what is a Jew? > > BTW, neither Cantor nor Godel were Jewish.
Goedel was certainly not Jewish. Cantor may well have been of Jewish descent, although he was certainly not brought up as a Jew but rather was raised as a Lutheran, a faith that he adhered to all of his life.
Well, according to footnotes in http://www.jinfo.org/Philosophers.html, "4. In Men of Mathematics, Eric Temple Bell described Cantor as being "of pure Jewish descent on both sides," although both parents were baptized. In a 1971 article entitled "Towards a Biography of George Cantor," the British historian of mathematics Ivor GrattanGuinness claimed (Annals of Science 27, pp. 345391, 1971) to be unable to find any evidence of Jewish ancestry (although he conceded that Cantor's wife, Vally Guttmann, was Jewish). However, a letter written by Georg Cantor to Paul Tannery in 1896 (Paul Tannery, Memoires Scientifique 13, Correspondance, GauthierVillars, Paris, 1934, p. 306) explicitly acknowledges that Cantor's paternal grandparents were members of the Sephardic community of Copenhagen. In a recent book, The Mystery of the Aleph: Mathematics, the Kabbalah, and the Search for Infinity (Four Walls Eight Windows, New York, 2000. pp. 94, 144), Amir Aczel provides new evidence in the form of a letter, recently uncovered by Nathalie Charraud, that was written by Georg Cantor's brother Louis to their mother. This letter seems to indicate that she was also of Jewish descent, as Bell had claimed originally."
In any case, Cantor's Jewishness ,or lack thereof, has nothing to do with the validity of his work in set theory.
> >  > hz > > 'Even the crows on the roofs caw about the nature of conditionals.' > >  Callimachus  >



