Friday, April 22, 2005

Friday April 22, 2005

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

Mac Lane Memorial

In memory of Saunders Mac Lane, mathematician, who died Thursday, April 14, 2005:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05/BirkhoffMacLane.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

From MacTutor

“It was during these years [the late 1930’s] that he wrote his famous text A Survey of Modern Algebra with G. Birkhoff which was published in 1941. Kaplansky writes in [*] about this text:-

A Survey of Modern Algebra opened to American undergraduates what had until then been largely reserved for mathematicians in van der Waerden‘s Moderne Algebra, published a decade earlier. The impact of Birkhoff and Mac Lane on the content and teaching of algebra in colleges and universities was immediate and long sustained. What we recognise in undergraduate courses in algebra today took much of its start with the abstract algebra which they made both accessible and attractive.

[*] I. Kaplansky, “The early work of Saunders Mac Lane on valuations and fields,” in I Kaplansky (ed.), Saunders Mac Lane: Selected Papers (New York – Heidelberg, 1979), 519-524.”

Mac Lane is noted for introducing, with Eilenberg, category theory.

For some remarks on the place of category theory in the history of mathematics, see Log24  entries of Dec. 3, 2002.


  1. I. Kaplansky is Lucy Kaplansky’s dad, right?

    Comment by stephenhoy — Saturday, April 23, 2005 @ 5:03 AM

  2. Apparently.

    Comment by m759 — Saturday, April 23, 2005 @ 10:15 AM

  3. I heard her perform a song she wrote about him. It was amusing.

    Comment by stephenhoy — Sunday, April 24, 2005 @ 11:16 PM

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