The founders of index theory: reminiscences of and about Sir Michael Atiyah, Raoul Bott, Friedrich Hirzebruch, and I. M. Singer. 2nd ed. (English) Zbl 1195.01090

Somerville, MA: International Press (ISBN 978-1-57146-137-7/hbk). lii, 393 p. (2009).
The second edition of this book of reminiscences of and about the four founders of index theory differs from the first edition [Zbl 1072.01021] only by the addition of a dozen pages of memories of Raoul Bott by his family, by Sir Michael Atiyah, by Friedrich Hirzebruch, and by an anonymous friend.
The book consists largely of letters, interviews, reminiscences. The contributions that are of a mathematical survey nature are: S. Donaldson, Geometry in Oxford c. 1980-1985; L. Tu, The life and works of Raoul Bott; F. Hirzebruch, Kunihiko Kodaira: mathematician, friend, teacher; E. Brieskorn, Singularities in the work of Friedrich Hirzebruch; M. Kreck, Hirzebruch-Flächen; R. V. Kadison, Which Singer is that?; L. Gårding, A happy collaboration.
Reviewer’s remarks: In L. Tu’s contribution, on p. 122, Andreas Blass is mistakenly listed as Raoul Bott’s Ph. D. student. Although Andreas Blass did take a great many of Bott’s courses during his graduate student years, and although Bott was instrumental in getting Blass the prestigious Hildebrandt Postdoctoral at the University of Michigan, his thesis advisor was Frank Wattenberg. In the Curriculum Vitae of Hirzebruch, under Education one mistakenly finds the two lines from the education of Raoul Bott listed, while his own education shows up under Post[s] Held, Membership[s], Honors.


01A70 Biographies, obituaries, personalia, bibliographies
01A60 History of mathematics in the 20th century
00A99 General and miscellaneous specific topics
01-06 Proceedings, conferences, collections, etc. pertaining to history and biography
58-03 History of global analysis
58J20 Index theory and related fixed-point theorems on manifolds


Zbl 1072.01021