Monday, August 22, 2022

On not discussing Alexander Grothendieck with my father

In the 16 May 2022 issue of "The New Yorker", Rivka Galchen writes of the mathematician Alexander Grothendieck (1928-2014), who made major contributions to multiple areas of mathematics in the mid-to-late twentieth century. But he also increasingly left the institutions of mathematics behind from 1970 on and spent the last two decades of his life in seclusion. Earlier in my life, I would have called up my mathematician father Paul Shields (1933-2016) and asked him about Grothendieck, and he would have explained what made him interesting, as he did so often over the years when I had questions about his work or the work of Kurt Gödel, Paul Cohen, and others. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 22 August 2022)

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