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Henri Poincaré:
A Scientific Biography
Jeremy Gray

Book Description | Table of Contents
Introduction [in PDF format]


"Gray, a mathematics historian and scholar on the life and work of Henry Poincaré, has, with the support of a Leverhulme Research Fellowship, produced this comprehensive and definitive 'scientific biography.' Gray offers abundant rich information on Poincaré's ideas and scientific process, the evolution and maturity of his mathematics including missteps, the dexterity of his reasoning, and the influences that shaped his thought."--Choice

"I recommend [this] book highly."--Robert E. O'Malley, Jr., SIAM Review

"Jeremy Gray's book on Poincaré's mathematics, physics, and philosophy is an important contribution to the literature and a huge step towards a full biography of this pioneer of modern science."--Reinhard Siegmund-Schultze, Zentralblatt MATH

"Gray's book is a comprehensive scientific biography of Poincare. It embraces the broad scope of Poincare's work, from his philosophical speculations to his popular writing, and gives a thorough overview of his extensive mathematical researches."--Peter Lynch, Irish Mathematical Society Bulletin

"[T]he author does not simply give platitudes when writing about Poincare's ideas: mathematicians will enjoy reading about his discoveries concerning the three-body problem, the theory of functions, topology, number theory, Lie theory, algebraic geometry, and probability. This scientific biography is the first to comprehensively cover all of Poincare's main contributions to mathematics, philosophy, and physics."--Alan S. McRae, Mathemematical Reviews Clippings

"Jeremy Gray has done a marvelous job of exposition and of binding together the many different cognitive, social and biographical strands into the coherent whole of a challenging, but highly rewarding, 'scientific biography'."--Klaus Hentschel, British Journal for the History of Science

"A good intellectual biography of an artist should help the reader see how a particular worldview shapes the pursuit of art. Gray's book does that most admirably."--Daniel S. Alexander, H-France Review


"Poincaré was much more than a mathematician: he was a public intellectual, and a rare scientist who enthusiastically rose to the challenge of explaining and interpreting science for the public. With amazingly lucid explanations of Poincaré's ideas, this book is one that any reader who wants to understand the context and content of Poincaré's work will want to have on hand."--Dana Mackenzie, author of The Universe in Zero Words

"This engaging book recounts the achievements of Henri Poincaré, covering his mathematics, physics, and philosophy, and his activities as a public intellectual. He is an eminently worthy subject for an intellectual biography of this kind."--Benjamin Wardhaugh, University of Oxford

"This comprehensive scientific biography of Poincaré situates the scientist's life and work in the sociopolitical context of his era. Covering his varied and wide-spanning work--from the most philosophical to the most technical--this book gives the general reader a clear historical sense of the man's voluminous accomplishments."--Jimena Canales, Harvard University

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File created: 4/22/2014

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