[FOM] philosophical literature on intuitionism

Robin Adams robin at cs.rhul.ac.uk
Wed Oct 15 17:21:02 EDT 2008

On Monday 13 October 2008 23:27:15 Thomas Forster wrote:
> I'm curious to know what the people who dreamt this stuff up actually
> thought they were doing.
> Where is the best place to start?  

I'm surprised no-one's mentioned Arend Heyting's "Intuitionism: An 
Introduction" yet.  The first chapter should be very useful to you.  It gives 
a brief account of the philosophical principles behind intuitionism, written 
in the form of a dialogue between Int the intuitionist, Class the classical 
mathematician, Form the formalist, and several others.

The last chapter on logic is also relevant.  The middle chapters not so much - 
in these, Heyting is mostly concerned with showing that constructive analysis 
is not as impoverished as most classical mathematicians at the time believed.

The book is a very good place to start, before you try to tackle Brouwer's or 
Dummett's denser prose.

Robin Adams <robin at cs.rhul.ac.uk>
Royal Holloway, University of London

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