The Mathematical Experience
The Mathematical Experience (1981) is a book by Philip J. Davis and Reuben Hersh that discusses the practice of modern mathematics from a historical and philosophical perspective. Its first paperback edition won a U.S. National Book Award in Science.[a]
The Mathematical Experience attempts to describe being a mathematician, in light of the history and philosophy of mathematics. It focuses on proof, without going full details. It gives examples of some famous proofs, as well as outstanding problems of mathematics (such as the Riemann hypothesis); and goes on to speculate on what a proof really means, in relationship to actual truth.
A new edition, published in 1998, includes exercises and problems, making the book more suitable for classrooms. There is also The Companion Guide to The Mathematical Experience, Study Edition. Both were co-authored with Elena A. Marchisotto.
The authors wrote a follow-up book, Descartes' Dream: The World According to Mathematics (Harcourt, 1986), and each has written other books with related themes, such as Mathematics And Common Sense: A Case of Creative Tension by Davis and What is Mathematics, Really? by Hersh.
- This was the 1983 award for paperback Science.
From 1980 to 1983 in National Book Award history there were dual hardcover and paperback awards in most categories, and several nonfiction subcategories including General Nonfiction. Most of the paperback award-winners were reprints, including this one.
- "National Book Awards – 1983". National Book Foundation. Retrieved 2012-03-07.
- jkauzlar (perhaps James Joseph Kauzlarich?) (18 September 2002). "MathForge.net--Power Tools for Online Mathematics". Archived from the original on 2006-10-022.
One of the classics of mathematical literature,The Mathematical Experience, by Philip J Davis and Rueben Hersh, remains pertinent and fulfills its lofty ambitions even 20 years past its 1981 publication.Check date values in:
- Gardner, Martin (August 13, 1981). "Is Mathematics for Real?". New York Review of Books: 37–40.