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Loving and Hating Mathematics by Reuben Hersh, Vera John-Steiner

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Review of the Literature

The “popular” literature on mathematics is booming. Every year excellent new books are added to the shelves. There are books that intend to teach a particular branch of mathematics. Textbooks of course are a whole industry unto themselves. There are books meant for the casual or “pleasure” reader, which deal with special topics beyond the standard high school or lower-division college level—lots of them on probability and statistics, and recently, good books about topology, about group theory, about graphs and networks, about non-Euclidean geometry.

Then there are books about the history of mathematics, sometimes in the form of collections of brief biographies arranged chronologically. There are books about the philosophy ...

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