Date of Submission
Open Access Senior Thesis
Bachelor of Arts
© 2017 Michael H. Boggess
Senior Thesis at CMC is often described institutionally as the capstone of one’s undergraduate education. As such, I wanted my own to accurately capture and reflect how I’ve grown as a student and mathematician these past four years. What follows is my attempt to distill lessons I learned in mathematics outside the curriculum, written for incoming undergraduates and anyone with just a little bit of mathematical curiosity. In it, I attempt to dispel some common preconceptions about mathematics, namely that it’s uninteresting, formulaic, acultural, or completely objective, in favor of a dynamic historical and cultural perspective, with particular attention paid to the early twentieth century search to secure the foundations of mathematics and a detailed look at contemporary Hungarian mathematics. After doing so, I conclude that the scope of mathematics is not what one might expect but that it’s still absolutely worth doing and appreciating.
Boggess, Michael H., "Four Years with Russell, Gödel, and Erdős: An Undergraduate's Reflection on His Mathematical Education" (2017). CMC Senior Theses. 1669.