Patterns of Change
Kvasz’s book is a contribution to the history and philosophy of mat- matics, or, as one might say, the historical approach to the philosophy of mathematics. This approach is for mathematics what the history and philosophy of science is for science. Yet the historical approach to the philosophy of science appeared much earlier than the historical approach to the philosophy of mathematics. The ?rst signi?cant work in the history and philosophy of science is perhaps William Whewell’s Philosophy of the Inductive Sciences, founded upon their History. This was originally published in 1840, a second, enlarged edition appeared in 1847, and the third edition appeared as three separate works p- lished between 1858 and 1860. Ernst Mach’s The Science of Mech- ics: A Critical and Historical Account of Its Development is certainly a work of history and philosophy of science. It ?rst appeared in 1883, and had six further editions in Mach’s lifetime (1888, 1897, 1901, 1904, 1908, and 1912). Duhem’s Aim and Structure of Physical Theory appeared in 1906 and had a second enlarged edition in 1914. So we can say that history and philosophy of science was a well-established ?eld th th by the end of the 19 and the beginning of the 20 century. By contrast the ?rst signi?cant work in the history and philosophy of mathematics is Lakatos’s Proofs and Refutations, which was p- lished as a series of papers in the years 1963 and 1964.
Focuses on changes of language in the history of mathematics Introduces exact tools of formal logic for the reconstruction of the historical development of the language of mathematics Offers two rather universal patterns of development