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A Locally Compact REU in the History of Mathematics: Involving Undergraduates in Research - For Further Reading

Betty Mayfield (Hood College) and Kimberly Tysdal (Hood College)


The five books about Euler published by the MAA  in 2007:


  1. Edward Sandifer, The Early Mathematics of Leonhard Euler.  This volume describes Euler’s early mathematical works: the 50 mathematical articles he wrote before he left St. Petersburg in 1741 to join the Academy of Frederick the Great in Berlin.


  1. William Dunham, editor, The Genius of Euler: Reflections on his Life and Work. Many of these papers first appeared in the 1983 issue of Mathematics Magazine (vol. 56, no. 5) devoted to Euler.


  1. Edward Sandifer, How Euler Did It. A collection of 40 monthly columns that appeared on MAA Online.


  1. N. N. Bogolyubov, G. K. Mikhailov, and A. P. Yushkevich, editors, Euler and Modern Science. An English translation of a collection of papers in Russian, from a conference held in Moscow and St. Petersburg in 1983, 200 years after Euler's death. 


  1. Robert E. Bradley, Lawrence A. D’Antonio and C. Edward Sandifer, editors, Euler at 300: An Appreciation. A collection of papers delivered at conferences in North America in the years leading up to the tercentenary of Euler’s birth.


And one more… 


  • William Dunham, Euler: The Master of Us All An introductory biographical sketch, followed by chapters describing Euler’s contributions to eight different topics—number theory, logarithms, infinite series, analytic number theory, complex variables, algebra, geometry, and combinatorics. (MAA, 1999).


About women and mathematics in the time of Euler:




  • Vera Lee, The Reign of Women in Eighteenth-Century France. (Schenkman Publishing Company, 1975.) "In the Age of Enlightenment, education did precious little to illuminate the minds of French women." Voltaire, Rousseau, and the role of women in society.


  • Some of the works of Laura Bassi, from the Biblioteca Comunale dell'Archiginnasio, Bologna and the Archivio di Stato, Bologna. Bassi's philosophical theses; paintings representing her graduation ceremony, the public discussion of her theses and her first lecture; poems dedicated to Bassi's graduation and the silver medal cast to celebrate the event; and other manuscripts by Bassi.


  • James E. Force and Sarah Hutton, editors, Newton and Newtonianism. (Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2004). See especially Essay 9: "Women, Science, and Newtonianism: Emilie du Châtelet versus Francesco Algarotti."
  • The Biographical Dictionary of Women in Science: Pioneering Lives From Ancient Times to the Mid-20th Century. Even though Laura Bassi is still not listed in the Dictionary of Scientific Biography, she – and the other women mentioned in this article – have entries in this volume.


Two recent print biographies:


  • Massimo Mazzotti, The World of Maria Gaetana Agnesi, Mathematician of God. (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2007). From the publisher’s description:Using newly discovered archival documents, Massimo Mazzotti reconstructs the wide spectrum of Agnesi's social experience and examines her relationships to various traditions—religious, political, social, and mathematical.”






The authors are grateful for the support of the Hood College Summer Research Institute, and to the many librarians, historians, and mathematicians who freely gave of their time and expertise to aid this project.

Betty Mayfield (Hood College) and Kimberly Tysdal (Hood College), "A Locally Compact REU in the History of Mathematics: Involving Undergraduates in Research - For Further Reading," Convergence (February 2010), DOI:10.4169/loci003263