[FOM] John Baez on David Corfield's book

Stephen G Simpson simpson at math.psu.edu
Tue Sep 23 16:04:31 EDT 2003

I wrote:

 > >I haven't read Corfield's book, but judging from this web page,
 > >Corfield's "anti-foundationalist" preoccupations sound similar to
 > >those of Tymoczko and Hersh.

Corfield replied:

 > If you're not with us, ...
 > Personally, I have no objection to what you and many other FOMers
 > do. [...]

If you have no objection to "foundationalism", then how are we to
understand remarks such as the following?

  "Not only does the foundationalist filter fail to detect the pulse
  of contemporary mathematics, it also screens off the past to us as
  not-yet-achieved.  Our job is to dismantle it ...."

And, what exactly do you mean by "the foundationalist filter"?  Am I
wrong in assuming it has something to do with foundations of
mathematics (f.o.m.), the topic of this mailing list?

Again, my critique of Tymoczko's book (FOM, 1 Feb 1998) is on-line at

Stephen G. Simpson
Professor of Mathematics
Penn State University

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