PHIL 138B — Philosophy of Mathematics

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Prerequisite: A course in logic or permission of the instructor. May not be repeated for credit by students who have taken PHIL 38b in previous years.

Basic issues in the foundations of mathematics will be explored through close study of selections from Frege, Russell, Carnap, and others, as well as from contemporary philosophers. Questions addressed include: What are the natural numbers? Do they exist in the same sense as tables and chairs? How can "finite beings" grasp infinity? What is the relationship between arithmetic and geometry? The classic foundational "programs," logicism, formalism, and intuitionism, are explored. Usually offered every second year.
Mr. Yourgrau