A Beautiful Mind (book)
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|Original title||A Beautiful Mind: a Biography of John Forbes Nash, Jr., Winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, 1994|
|Published||1998 (Simon & Schuster)|
|510/.92 B 21|
|LC Class||QA29.N25 N37 1998|
A Beautiful Mind (1998) is a biography of Nobel Prize-winning economist and mathematician John Forbes Nash, Jr. by Sylvia Nasar, professor of journalism at Columbia University. An unauthorized work, it won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1998 and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in biography. It inspired the 2001 film by the same name.
Although Nasar notes that Nash did not consider himself a homosexual, she describes his arrest for indecent exposure and firing from RAND amid the suspicion that he was a homosexual (then considered grounds for revoking one's security clearance).
The book ends with Nash being awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1994. The book is a detailed description of many aspects of Nash's life, and a close examination of his personality and motivations. It gives an interesting perspective on the stresses placed on personal and professional relationships by severe mental illness.
The book was widely praised. John Milnor notes the ethical issues posed by the book, an unauthorized biography and prepared without the cooperation of the subject.
The book won the 1998 National Book Critics Circle Award for biography, was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for biography, and was shortlisted for the Rhône-Poulenc Prize in 1999. The book also appeared on the New York Times' bestseller list for biography. It is particularly notable for describing the nature of Nash's mathematical genius as well as his struggle with mental illness.
- A Beautiful Mind, pp. 185-186
- John Miln, Review -John Nash and A Beautiful Mind, American Mathematical Society, October 1998
- Prizes for Science Books previous winners and shortlists, The Royal Society website
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