Jobs in the 1930s and the views of George D. Birkhoff. (English) Zbl 0818.01007

In this article, the author tries “to deny the persistent statements that George Birkhoff was notably anti-Semitic”. Ralph Phillips has written eloquently of the difficulties of getting a job in the USA in the 1930s and early 1940s. In this article the author writes: “In the 1930’s there was a great tension in the American mathematics community: to help emigre’s or to support young Americans. Oswald Veblen and others at Princeton were vigorously active in finding positions for many emigre’s. George Birkhoff …was equally emphatic in wanting to support promising young Americans …the differing views of Veblen and Birkhoff served to help the balance.” As the author concludes, Birkhoff should not now, fifty years later, be made the whipping boy for the regrettable views, if any, that, he might have shared in his personal talks.


01A70 Biographies, obituaries, personalia, bibliographies

Biographic References:

Birkhoff, G. D.
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