# A Century of Advancing Mathematics

Share this page *Edited by *
*Stephen F. Kennedy; Donald J. Albers; Gerald L. Alexanderson; Della Dumbaugh; Frank A. Faris; Deanna B. Haunsperger; Paul Zorn*

MAA Press: An Imprint of the American Mathematical Society

The MAA was founded in 1915 to serve as a home
for The American Mathematical Monthly. The mission of the
Association—to advance mathematics, especially at the collegiate
level—has, however, always been larger than merely publishing
world-class mathematical exposition. MAA members have explored more
than just mathematics; they have, as this volume tries to make
evident, investigated mathematical connections to pedagogy, history,
the arts, technology, literature, and every field of intellectual
endeavor.

Essays, all commissioned for this volume, include exposition
by Bob Devaney, Robin Wilson, and Frank Morgan; history from Karen
Parshall, Della Dumbaugh, and Bill Dunham; pedagogical discussion from
Paul Zorn, Joe Gallian, and Michael Starbird; and cultural commentary
from Bonnie Gold, Jon Borwein, and Steve Abbott.

This volume contains 35 essays by all-star writers and expositors
writing to celebrate an extraordinary century for mathematics. More
mathematics has been created and published since 1915 than in all of
previous recorded history. We've solved age-old mysteries, created
entire new fields of study, and changed our conception of what
mathematics is. Many of those stories are told in this volume as the
contributors paint a portrait of the broad cultural sweep of
mathematics during the MAA's first century. Mathematics is the most
thrilling, the most human area of intellectual inquiry. You will find
in this volume compelling proof of that claim.

#### Reviews & Endorsements

… The essays range in difficulty from those intended for scholars alone to those interested laypeople will readily comprehend. In the preface, Kennedy boldly announces that "mathematics is the most thrilling, the most human, area of intellectual inquiry" and suggests that this book offers "compelling proof of the claim." Proof enough.

-- M. Schiff, CHOICE

# Table of Contents

## A Century of Advancing Mathematics

- A Century of Advancing Mathematics cover11
- copyright page ii3
- Contents v6
- Preface ix10
- Part I Mathematical Developments 114
- The Hyperbolic Revolution: From Topology to Geometry, and Back 316
- A Century of Complex Dynamics 1528
- Map-Coloring Problems 3548
- Six Milestones in Geometry 5164
- Defying God: the Stanley-Wilf Conjecture, Stanley-Wilf Limits, and a Two-Generation Explosion of Combinatorics 6578
- What Is the Best Approach to Counting Primes? 8396
- A Century of Elliptic Curves 117130

- Part II Historical Developments 133146
- The Mathematical Association of America: Its First 100 Years 135148
- The Stratification of the American Mathematical Community: The Mathematical Association of America and the American Mathematical Society, 1915--1925 159172
- Time and Place: Sustaining the American Mathematical Community 177190
- Abstract (Modern) Algebra in America 1870--1950: A Brief Account 191204

- Part III Pedagogical Developments 217230
- The History of the Undergraduate Program in Mathematics in the United States 219232
- Inquiry-Based Learning Through the Life of the MAA 239252
- A Passport to Pleasure 253266
- Strength in Numbers: Broadening the View of the Mathematics Major 257270
- A History of Undergraduate Research in Mathematics 263276
- The Calculus Reform Movement: A Personal Account 275288
- Introducing ex 283296

- Part IV Computational Developments 295308
- Part V Culture and Communities 331344
- Philosophy of Mathematics: What Has Happened Since Gdel's Results? 333346
- Twelve Classics People who Love Mathematics Should Know; or, ``What do you mean, you haven't read E. T. Bell? 351364
- The Dramatic Life of Mathematics: A Centennial History of the Intersection of Mathematics and Theater in a Prologue, Three Acts, and an Epilogue 365378
- 2007: The Year of Euler 379392
- The Putnam Competition: Origin, Lore, Structure 387400
- Getting Involved with the MAA: A Path Less Traveled 393406
- Henry L. Alder 397410
- Lida K. Barrett 401414
- Ralph P. Boas 405418
- Leonard Gillman --- Reminiscences 407420
- Paul Halmos: No Apologies 411424
- Ivan Niven 415428
- George Pólya and the MAA 421434