Humanities Council Short-Term Visiting Fellow Lecture

Date
Apr 5, 2022, 4:30 pm6:00 pm
Location
Robertson Hall, Bowl 1

Speaker

Details

Event Description

***THIS WILL BE A HYBRID EVENT***

Zoom Meeting Link:

https://princeton.zoom.us/j/96002628104

Abstract:  Mathematics textbooks are full of pictures (diagrams) with which theorems are sometimes proved. The validity of these visual demonstrations has always been the focus of important debates among philosophers and mathematicians. The talk discusses this problem in historical perspective, and shows that in modern geometry there was a gradual disappearance of diagrammatic proofs compared to Greek geometry. This phenomenon is explained through a history of the different modern conceptions of space, and of the consequent thematization of space as the object of geometry. It is shown that the birth of modern logic owes much to such debates on the nature of space. In the process, geometric diagrams were transformed from demonstrative icons into pictorial images.