A new Hogben?

Hogben - Mathematics for the Million

Lancelot Hogben was a socialist zoologist who wrote a famous book issued in 1936 called Mathematics for the Million. A second revised edition followed in 1968 – my edition is the Merlin Press reissue in paperback.

In the book, Hogben emphasises the role of navigation and position finding in the development of mathematics and includes several chapters on spherical trigonometry. He continues through the 16th century with calculus and moves into matrix theory and statistics in the last chapter.

A new Hogben would surely need to include chapters on genetics (counting, permutations and combinations) and then onto algorithmic complexity and fractals? Perhaps a chapter on ‘’sensitive dependence on intial conditions’’ aka chaos would balance the calculus chapter?

Comments are closed.