Labyrinth of Thought

A History of Set Theory and Its Role in Modern Mathematics

  • José Ferreirós

Part of the Science Networks. Historical Studies book series (SNHS, volume 23)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxi
  2. The Emergence of Sets within Mathematics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-2
    2. José Ferreirós
      Pages 117-144
    3. José Ferreirós
      Pages 145-168
  3. Entering the Labyrinth — Toward Abstract Set Theory

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 169-169
    2. José Ferreirós
      Pages 215-255
  4. In Search of an Axiom System

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 297-298
    2. José Ferreirós
      Pages 299-336
    3. José Ferreirós
      Pages 337-364
    4. José Ferreirós
      Pages 365-392
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 393-440

About this book


"José Ferreirós has written a magisterial account of the history of set theory which is panoramic, balanced, and engaging. Not only does this book synthesize much previous work and provide fresh insights and points of view, but it also features a major innovation, a full-fledged treatment of the emergence of the set-theoretic approach in mathematics from the early nineteenth century. This takes up Part One of the book. Part Two analyzes the crucial developments in the last quarter of the nineteenth century, above all the work of Cantor, but also Dedekind and the interaction between the two. Lastly, Part Three details the development of set theory up to 1950, taking account of foundational questions and the emergence of the modern axiomatization." (Bulletin of Symbolic Logic)


Cantor Set Theory development history of mathematics innovation interaction logic mathematics set story

Authors and affiliations

  • José Ferreirós
    • 1
  1. 1.Dpto. de Filosofía y Lógica, Avda. San Francisco Javier, s/nUniversidad de SevillaSevillaSpain

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