The Mathematical Psychology of Gratry and Boole: Translated from the Language of Higher Calculus into that of Elementary Geometry

The Mathematical Psychology of Gratry and Boole: Translated from the Language of Higher Calculus into that of Elementary Geometry

by Mary Everest Boole

Paperback

$7.99

Overview

A volume of a hundred pages with so formidable a title as "The Mathematical Psychology of Gratry and Boole, translated from the language of the Higher Calculus into that of Elementary Geometry by Mary Everest Boole" is likely to attract some little attention by its title alone. But the mathematician will probably pass this bizarre little volume over to the psychologist, and the psychologist will be equally anxious to shift the burden of responsibility upon the mathematician; while the curiosity of the general reader, unless he happens to enjoy something of this flavor, will be satisfied by a very small dose.

The husband of the translator was Professor George Boole, an eminent mathematician, and particularly remembered for his original contributions to the field of symbolic logic as studied by algebraic methods. But the present brochure is as innocent of any account of Boole's work as it is of mathematics or psychology. There is a liberal sprinkling of mathematical terms distorted into unusual uses, but no appreciation of the essential principles of mathematical procedure.

The task of stating what the book is not is comparatively simple; to indicate what it really contains is very difficult, for this raises the question on the part of the reader as to whether he really knows or understands what the book does contain. There is, however, a considerable use of the argument by analogy, and the analogies are very flimsy. Because some figures used in the process of multiplication disappear in the conclusion, we have the law of sacrifice; the geometric diagonal indicates the principle of compromise: mathematical thought is inspiration, and habit is the multiplication table.

Then we have disquisitions on vivisection and theology, on genius and insanity, on education and Newton, on morals and religion. These are all disconnectedly strung together, and leave one with an uncanny sense of puzzlement and incoherence. It is possible that the author had some ideas to express, but they are not very apparent, and may just as well come under any other rubric as under that of Mathematical Psychology.

-The Dial, Volume 24

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781536938197
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 08/06/2016
Pages: 128
Product dimensions: 5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.27(d)

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