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The Universal Language

Denis Guedj, Lory Frankel

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A fascinating look at the history and development of numbers and their relationship with art, science, music and more


Numbers are all around us and we take them for granted. Who first invented them? How old are they, and how were they developed? How did they come to represent abstract, universal concepts? How do they vary in different parts of the world today? Who invented algebra? Geometry? Calculus? Zero? How do these ideas affect our daily lives?

This information-packed book uses clear language and over 130 illustrations to describe the basic principles of numbers - arithmetic, whole numbers, natural numbers, the concepts of zero and infinity - as well as the ways in which numbers have been used in art and other disciplines.

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback

Size: 17.7 x 12.4 cm

Extent: 176 pp

Publication date: 16 February 1998

ISBN: 9780500300800

About the Author

Denis Guedj is a professor of the history of science at the University of Paris–VIII, where he has also taught mathematics and film. As well as being a filmmaker and performer, he is author of numerous books on the history of mathematics and science.

List of Contributors

Lory Frankel