Posted by: Heather | March 28, 2012

Why Learn Higher Math?

I’m not sure which is better, what C.J. Keyser says or how he says it.

Over and above the humbler role of
mathematics as a metrical and computatory art,
over and above her unrivalled value as a standard
of exactitude and as an instrument in every field
of experimental and observational research, even
beyond her justly famed disciplinary and emancipating
power, releasing the faculties from the
fickle dominion of sense by winning their allegiance
to the things of the spirit, inuring them to the
austerities of reason, the stern demands of rigorous
thought, giving the mental enlargement, the
peaceful perspective, the poise and the elevation
that come at length from continued contemplation
of the universe under the aspects of the infinite
and the eternal—my conviction that above and
beyond these services, which by common consent
of the competent are peculiarly her own, mathematics
will yet further demonstrate her human
significance by the shedding of light more and
more copious as the years go by on ultimate problems
of philosophy and theology, is not a passing
fancy, or a momentary whim. ~ circa 1922

 

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Responses

  1. Extra points, by the way, if you can identify the grammatical subject and main verb. 🙂


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