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Cauchy and the Creation of Complex Function Theory



In this book, Dr. Smithies analyzes the process through which Cauchy created the basic structure of complex analysis, describing first the eighteenth century background before proceeding to examine the stages of Cauchy's own work, culminating in the proof of the residue theorem and his work on expansions in power series. Smithies describes how Cauchy overcame difficulties including false starts and contradictions brought about by over-ambitious assumptions, as well as the improvements that came about as the subject developed in Cauchy's hands. Controversies associated with the birth of complex function theory are described in detail. Throughout, new light is thrown on Cauchy's thinking during this watershed period. This book is the first to make use of the whole spectrum of available original sources and will be recognized as the authoritative work on the creation of complex function theory.

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