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Ancient Chinese Mathematics in Action: The Mathematics and Politics of Inspiration

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The Chinese mathematician Wu Wen-Tsun (born 1919) has since the end of the Cultural Revolution (1976) developed a method of computer proofs (“mechanisation of mathematics”) using elements of old Chinese algebra. I will show how the rhetorical and ideological effect of this inspiration interplays with the actual mathematics behind it.

This talk is part of the Darwin College Humanities and Social Sciences Group series.

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