id: 06160636
dt: a
an: 2013c.00039
au: Preveraud, Thomas
ti: A course of mathematics (1798‒1841): the American story of a British
textbook.
so: Bjarnadóttir, Kristín (ed.) et al., “Dig where you stand" 2.
Proceedings of the second “International conference on the history of
mathematics education", New University of Lisbon, Portugal, October
2‒5, 2011. Lisbon: UIED, Unidade de Investigação Educação e
Desenvolvimento; Caparica: Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de
Ciência e Tecnologia (ISBN 978-989-97487-2-9/pbk). 383-397 (2012).
py: 2012
pu: Lisbon: UIED, Unidade de Investigação Educação e Desenvolvimento;
Caparica: Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciência e
Tecnologia
la: EN
cc: A30 U20
ut: historical textbooks
ci:
li:
ab: Summary: A course of mathematics is an English mathematics textbook first
published in 1798 by Charles Hutton, professor at the Royal Military
Academy in London. The document, which praises the mathematical science
for its practical power, is characterized by deliberately
general-interest content and a pragmatic style. Following its
publication in England, the textbook was immediately and integrally
sent to the United States. In 1812, a pool of New-York publishers
ordered an American version of $A$ course of mathematics from Robert
Adrain, a professor whose works and contributions to scientific papers
had given him some recognition. The textbook was then annotated,
corrected and reorganized. With the transatlantic circulation of the
texts, both the English and the American versions were updated until
1841, with each version being used as an incomplete source for the
other. These reciprocal updates enlighten a slow but undeniable
differentiation of the two books; the American course gains a specific
identity especially with the integration of french mathematical
content. The analysis of the evolutionary path of this textbook
illustrates how the mathematics taught in America, previously strongly
influenced by their English peers, became more independent in the first
decades of the nineteenth century.
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