Publication details

“Crossroad, melting pot, asylum, or trap?” International influences on Prague mathematical culture



Year of publication 2014
Type Workshop
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Education

Description Around the turn of the 20th century, Prague gradually grew from a small provincial town to a multicultural crossroads of mathematical research. The two largely separate communities of Czech-speaking and German-speaking academics competed with each other for better conditions. Seasoned with elements of Czech, Russian (or, more broadly speaking, Slavic), German, French, and Jewish cultures created a specific milieu and attracted Albert Einstein, Wilhelm Blaschke, Georg Alexander Pick and many others. With the rise of Nazism in Germany after 1933, Prague became a temporary asylum for many refugees. Unfortunately, this asylum in the end trapped the scientist who hesitated to emigrate from the Czechoslovakia. After World War II, waves of revenge brought Prague back to the rank of provincial city. The meeting traditionally strives to support interdisciplinary debate and explore various approaches to history of mathematics. This year, we would like to offer a platform for the discussion of the importance of cultural and personal ties for the development of mathematics and the sciences. We thus invite contributions dealing with these phenomena also outside the narrow, albeit extremely interesting, scope of interwar Czechoslovakia described above.

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