The Calculus: A Genetic Approach
194 pp., paperbound, 2007
Published jointly with the University of Chicago Press
When first published in 1963, it was one of the most radical calculus texts of its generation. Now, back in print for the first time in 26 years, Otto Toeplitz's The Calculus: A Genetic Approach refuses to turn calculus into a never-ending string of facts and equations. Instead, it uses the history of mathematics to paint calculus as the exciting, ever-changing subject that it is. With a new foreword by David Bressoud, the book is split into four sections, covering the concept of limit, the definite integral, differential and integral calculus, and the application of calculus to Newton's and Kepler's laws of motion.
Toeplitz's The Calculus is not meant to be a calculus textbook. And, although it touches on a good deal of mathematical history, neither is it meant to be a history book. The book can serve as an excellent supplemental text, especially for those students not particularly challenged by a standard calculus course. It can also be used by both prospective and current teachers to generate ideas for a deeper curriculum. The Calculus: A Genetic Approach should be a staple of any calculus lover's library.
German-born Otto Toeplitz (18811940) was one of the leading mathematicians in the field of calculus, specifically for his work with infinite linear and quadratic forms. He was also coauthor of the popular book The Enjoyment of Mathematics.R. Miller
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