Philosophy of Mathematics

The philosophy of mathematics is the branch of philosophy that studies the philosophical assumptions, foundations, and implications of mathematics. The aim of the philosophy of mathematics is to provide an account of the nature and methodology of mathematics and to understand the place of mathematics in people's lives. The logical and structural nature of mathematics itself makes this study both broad and unique among its philosophical counterparts.

The terms philosophy of mathematics and mathematical philosophy are frequently used as synonyms. The latter, however, may be used to refer to several other areas of study. One refers to a project of formalising a philosophical subject matter, say, aesthetics, ethics, logic, metaphysics, or theology, in a purportedly more exact and rigorous form, as for example the labours of Scholastic theologians, or the systematic aims of Leibniz and Spinoza. Another refers to the working philosophy of an individual practitioner or a like-minded community of practicing mathematicians. Additionally, some understand the term "mathematical philosophy" to be an allusion to the approach taken by Bertrand Russell in his books The Principles of Mathematics and Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy.

Read more about Philosophy Of Mathematics:  Recurrent Themes, History, Aesthetics

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Famous quotes containing the words mathematics and/or philosophy:

    Mathematics alone make us feel the limits of our intelligence. For we can always suppose in the case of an experiment that it is inexplicable because we don’t happen to have all the data. In mathematics we have all the data ... and yet we don’t understand. We always come back to the contemplation of our human wretchedness. What force is in relation to our will, the impenetrable opacity of mathematics is in relation to our intelligence.
    Simone Weil (1909–1943)

    You may decry some of these scruples and protest that there are more things in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in my philosophy. I am concerned, rather, that there should not be more things dreamt of in my philosophy than there are in heaven or earth.
    Nelson Goodman (b. 1906)