Mathematicians Of The Day

9th February

On this day in 1937, Ruth Moufang habilitated, being only the third German woman to habilitate in mathematics. However, the Nazis refused her permission to teach (because she was a woman), so from 1937 she became an industrial mathematician working on elasticity theory. In fact this gives Moufang the unique position of being the first German woman with a doctorate to be employed in industry. She may actually be the first ever such woman anywhere.

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Quotation of the day

From Henry Smith
It is the peculiar beauty of this method, gentlemen, and one which endears it to the really scientific mind, that under no circumstance can it be of the smallest possible utility.
Quoted in H Eves Mathematical Circles Squared (Boston 1972).