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Extended Audio Sample Mystery of the Aleph: Mathematics, the Kabbalah, and the Search for Infinity, by Amir D. Aczel Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (313 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Amir D. Aczel Narrator: Henry Leyva Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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From the end of the nineteenth century until his death, one of history’s most brilliant mathematicians languished in an asylum.

The Mystery of the Aleph tells the story of Georg Cantor (1845–1918), a Russian-born German who created set theory, the concept of infinite numbers, and the continuum hypothesis, which challenged the very foundations of mathematics. His ideas brought expected denunciation from established corners, called a “corruptor of youth” not only for his work in mathematics, but for his larger attempts to meld spirituality and science.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Aczel’s compact and fascinating work of mathematical popularization uses the life and work of the German mathematician Georg Cantor (1845–1918) to describe the history of infinity—of human thought about boundlessly large numbers, sequences, and sets.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Aczel provides a good history leading up to and past Cantor’s work…A brief history of the Kabbalah and highlights of some of its concepts help…[listeners] understand Cantor’s work. The author writes cleanly and clearly on a complex subject, and…[listeners] don’t have to be good at math to enjoy this book. It’s perfect for analytically minded students who love to ponder big questions. Those who enjoyed the popular cosmology books by Stephen Hawking are likely to devour this one as well.”

    School Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by BAKU | 1/15/2014

    " Didn't quite get all of this, but now I understand why ' infinities ' are a problem when the show up ( and the difference between potential and actual infinity ) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Alison | 1/6/2014

    " was a good read although it did not go indepth..."casual" math reading, if you will. i always gravitate towards the mathematics section in the bookstore (math nerd) and this was a good "light" read while i was doped up on vicodin after i got my wisdom teeth out. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Susan | 1/2/2014

    " A surprisingly quick read! I would have liked a little more in-depth info on all the mathy stuff, but I can understand where that might not have been possible. Interesting stuff. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Larry Fenn | 10/16/2013

    " Georg Cantor is worthwhile to learn about; the rest of the book, not so much. "

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