The Star and the Whole

Fabrizio Palombi

Gian-Carlo Rota (1932-1999), a leading figure in contemporary mathematics, was one of the few scientists of the past century who was capable of coupling scientific research with philosophical reflection. He made fundamental contributions to combinatorial analysis, and trained several generations of mathematicians in his long teaching and research career at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Rota's philosophical works, inspired by phenomenology, seek to comprehend and overcome the fracture between the analytic tradition and continental philosophy while tackling problems relative to the transcendental structure of science. This book is the first study that examines Rota's philosophical reflection in the light of Husserl's notion of Fundierung, technological conquest, and the debate that has characterized the connection between science and mathematics in the second half of the century. By its particular position at the border between various spheres and disciplines, the work presented here ranges from contemporary philosophy, epistemology, psychology, and mathematics to scientific questions in general'--

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