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A Mathematician's Apology by C. P. Snow, G. H. Hardy

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I WILL end with a summary of my conclusions, but putting them in a more personal way. I said at the beginning that anyone who defends his subject will find that he is defending himself; and my justification of the life of a professional mathematician is bound to be, at bottom, a justification of my own. Thus this concluding section will be in its substance a fragment of autobiography.

I cannot remember ever having wanted to be anything but a mathematician. I suppose that it was always clear that my specific abilities lay that way, and it never occurred to me to question the verdict of my elders. I do not remember having felt, as a boy, any passion for mathematics, and such notions as I may have had of the career of a mathematician were ...

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