G. H. Hardy On The Supposedly ‘Second-Rate Mind’

In A Mathematician’s Apology G. H. Hardy wrote: It is a melancholy experience for a professional mathematician to find himself writing about mathematics. The function of a mathematician is to do something, to prove new theorems, to add to mathematics, and not to talk about what he or other mathematicians have done. Statesmen despise publicists,Continue reading “G. H. Hardy On The Supposedly ‘Second-Rate Mind’”

William James And The Pre-Raphaelites’ Influence

This morning, for no particular reason, or perhaps because I’ve been reading Becoming William James, Howard Feinstein’s excellent psycho-biography of William James, I posted the following on Facebook: William James was a better, more interesting, writer than Henry James. These are, as my friend Margaret Toth pointed out, “fighting words.” But of course, as IContinue reading “William James And The Pre-Raphaelites’ Influence”

Do Sancho Panzas Trump Don Quixotes?

In Stendhal‘s┬áThe Charterhouse of Parma, the Conte says to ‘our hero’ Fabrizio: A half brainless individual, but one who keeps his eyes open and day in day out acts with prudence, will often enjoy the pleasure of triumphing over men of imagination. It was by a foolish error of imagination that Napoleon was led toContinue reading “Do Sancho Panzas Trump Don Quixotes?”