Proofs and Refutations

The Logic of Mathematical Discovery

Recommended by Alf Coles, and 1 others. See all reviews

Ranked #20 in Logical Reasoning, Ranked #22 in Logicsee more rankings.

A novel introduction to the philosophy of mathematics, mostly in the form of a discussion between a group of students and their teacher. It combats the positivist picture and develops a much richer, more dramatic progression. less

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Alf Coles I first came across this book at university in a course on the philosophy of mathematics. Looking back, it was one of my first experiences of how maths could be different to how I was taught it. In the book, Lakatos takes a particular area of mathematics to do with shape and recreates an imaginary dialogue where he and the characters in the book go through this extraordinary process of developing what mathematicians would call conjectures. So they are developing predictions about how a particular property of a shape might operate, or which types of shape it might be true for. There’s this... (Source)

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