New Books Network

Julian Havil

Curves for the Mathematically Curious

An Anthology of the Unpredictable, Historical, Beautiful, and Romantic

Princeton University Press 2019

New Books in Intellectual HistoryNew Books in MathematicsNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in ScienceNew Books in Science & TechnologyNew Books Network November 15, 2019 Jim Stein

Today I talked to Julian Havil about his latest book Curves for the Mathematically Curious: An Anthology of the Unpredictable, Historical, Beautiful, and Romantic...

Today I talked to Julian Havil about his latest book Curves for the Mathematically Curious: An Anthology of the Unpredictable, Historical, Beautiful, and Romantic (Princeton University Press, 2019). You don’t have to be mathematically curious to appreciate Julian’s talent for weaving mathematics and history together – but mathematical curiosity and a year or two of calculus will greatly add to your enjoyment of it. This is not your father’s – or grandfather’s – standard collection of conic sections, with perhaps a few curves of higher degree thrown in. This is a collection of elegant, unusual, and mathematically significant curves, chosen by a connoisseur, and beautifully presented for your delectation. You may recognize a few old favorites – the catenary and the normal curve come to mind – but many of the others will be new to you, as they were to me.