The Mathematics of Egypt, Mesopotamia, China, India, and Islam: A Sourcebook

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Princeton University Press, Aug 5, 2007 - Mathematics - 685 pages

In recent decades it has become obvious that mathematics has always been a worldwide activity. But this is the first book to provide a substantial collection of English translations of key mathematical texts from the five most important ancient and medieval non-Western mathematical cultures, and to put them into full historical and mathematical context. The Mathematics of Egypt, Mesopotamia, China, India, and Islam gives English readers a firsthand understanding and appreciation of these cultures' important contributions to world mathematics.


The five section authors--Annette Imhausen (Egypt), Eleanor Robson (Mesopotamia), Joseph Dauben (China), Kim Plofker (India), and J. Lennart Berggren (Islam)--are experts in their fields. Each author has selected key texts and in many cases provided new translations. The authors have also written substantial section introductions that give an overview of each mathematical culture and explanatory notes that put each selection into context. This authoritative commentary allows readers to understand the sometimes unfamiliar mathematics of these civilizations and the purpose and significance of each text.


Addressing a critical gap in the mathematics literature in English, this book is an essential resource for anyone with at least an undergraduate degree in mathematics who wants to learn about non-Western mathematical developments and how they helped shape and enrich world mathematics. The book is also an indispensable guide for mathematics teachers who want to use non-Western mathematical ideas in the classroom.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Chapter
2
Egyptian Mathematics
7
Mathematics in Administrative Texts
40
Mathematics in the GraecoRoman Period
46
Appendices
52
Mesopotamian Mathematics
57
The Long Third Millennium c 32002000 BCE
73
The Earliest YetKnown
201
The Zhou bisuan jing and Right
213
The Chinese Euclid Liu Hui
226
The Ten Classics of Ancient Chinese Mathematics
293
X Conclusion
375
Chapter 4
385
Ill Evolution of Mathematics in Medieval India
398
The Kerala School
480

The Old Babylonian Period c 20001600 BCE
82
Later Mesopotamia c 1400150 BCE
154
Appendices
180
Chapter 3
187
Continuity and Transition in
498
Chapter 5
513
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Victor J. Katz is professor emeritus of mathematics at the University of the District of Columbia. His many books include the textbook, A History of Mathematics: An Introduction, 2nd ed. (Addison-Wesley). He is the coeditor of Historical Modules for the Teaching and Learning of Mathematics.

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