The Man Who Knew Infinity

    The Man Who Knew Infinity  (Paperback, Robert Kanigel)

    226 Ratings & 32 Reviews
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    • Binding: Paperback
    • Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
    • ISBN: 9780349104522, 0349104522
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    This is the biography of a mathematical prodigy- Srinivasa Ramanujan, whose inhibited genius finally came to recognition when he stepped into Europe.

    Summary Of The Book

    Srinivasa Ramanujan was an enigma during his lifetime and continues to be one, even today. Ramanujan was born into a poor Brahmin family in Madras, and his parents were financially unable to support him after his initial schooling, which is one of life’s little ironies, since his contributions to the world of mathematics are inspiring and brilliant.

    Kanigel doesn’t stop with focusing on the protagonist, and provides a peek into the setting in which Ramanujan was groomed and raised. He describes how the education system in India works, the orthodox nature of Ramanujan’s family, and his premature marriage to a very young girl.

    He takes readers through how, after writing to many mathematicians and several failed attempts to make himself heard, luck finally aided Ramanujan when G.H. Hardy, an English mathematician, realized his gift. Ramanujan received a scholarship to continue with his study and research in the field of Pure Mathematics. Hardy managed to get him to England, where Ramanujan worked closely with him and other Cambridge mathematicians.

    Kanigel also acquaints the world with the canons that guide the Indian society, and in Ramanujan’s case, all these hampered with his mathematical explorations. Unable to comply with cultural norms, he became a social outcast. An arranged marriage to a minor, who suffered a great deal under his mother’s ill-treatment, left him in a state of anxiety and distress.

    Unfortunately, in England, he contracted tuberculosis and his battle against the disease deterred his further discoveries. He succumbed to the illness at the early age of 32. It is to be noted that some of his unfinished work is still being analyzed by mathematicians.

    The Man Who Knew Infinity was written by Robert Kanigel in the year 1991. The verity of the information provided in the biography evinces extensive research and the book received and continues to receive positive reviews in India and abroad.

    About Robert Kanigel

    Robert Kanigel is a Brooklyn-born biographer and science writer. After completing a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, he began freelance writing in 1970 and published his first book in 1986.

    Kanigel’s writings, however, are not confined to books, and he has published over 400 articles, essays and reviews, appearing in magazines like Johns Hopkins Magazine, Baltimore Sun, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, Science 85, and Human Behavior. As an author, he wrote many books, including Apprentice To Genius: The Making of a Scientific Dynasty, The One Best Way: Frederick Winslow Taylor and the Enigma of Efficiency, High Season: How One French Riviera Town Has Seduced Travelers for Two Thousand Years, and On An Irish Island.

    Kanigel’s books are commended for their well-researched and detailed content and are considered lively and interesting to read.
    Robert Kanigel was born on 28 May, 1946, and studied in New York. Later, he went on to become professor of science writing at MIT and directed a Graduate Program in Writing for 7 years. In 1999, Kanigel returned to Baltimore to pick up his writing full time and began working on a biography of Jane Jacobs.

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    Book Details
    • Imprint
      • Abacus
    • Author
      • Robert Kanigel
    • Width
      • 5 Inches (US)
    • Height
      • 360 Inches (US)
    • Length
      • 5.08 in
    • Weight
      • 29.0 Millimeters
    Frequently Bought Together
    The Man Who Knew Infinity
    The Man Who Knew Infinity
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    226 Ratings
    32 Reviews
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    Most Helpful 
    Most Recent 
    By Certified Buyers 

    A magical story,brilliantly told

    By far the best scientific biography I ever read.It's a magical story,of a person whose life and story almost sound mythical,a person who continues to be a source of inspiration for people around the world who are familiar with him.And it is a story told in a very engaging way by Robert Kanigel.The exhaustive research he did is remarkable. This book will captivate you and touch you and it will stay in your memory as one of the finest literary experiences you have had.And what is more,it is a ...

    Nithyanand Rao

    Certified Buyer

    17 Nov, 2009

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    About the quality of the production

    This review is NOT about the contents of this book - of course that is of very
    high quality. But the item is miserbale in production quality. Very bad quality pages and
    equally bad printing. I think for Rs. 395/- it was really being fooled by hachette India
    who are publishing it specially for Indian readers.

    Sankar%20Prasad Das

    Certified Buyer

    20 Dec, 2013

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    Excellent read & a well researched book. The genius of Ramanujan is perplexing. A bit sad that he had to die so young. Can't imagine what he'd have done living a few more years in good health. A must read for any math fan - strongly recommended!


    Certified Buyer

    29 Dec, 2011

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    Awesome book but poor page quality !!

    Nothing to be commented on the story . But what a poor page quality at this level of high price!!! disappointed!

    Bishal Banerjee

    Certified Buyer

    11 Mar, 2014

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    It is sad that the best biography about an Indian mathematician had to be written by a foreigner. The book gives you a fascinating insight into Srinivasan Ramanujan's life. Interested in mathematics from early on, Ramanujan overcame all barriers, including a complete lack of formal mathematical training, to become one of the greatest mathematicians of the 20th century. The book explores Ramanujan's mind which worked very differently from an average 'great' mathematician. Focused on intuitive ...

    Rushil Nagda

    Certified Buyer

    17 Feb, 2012

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    Simply awesome

    This is the most notable biography of the greatest Indian Mathematician.


    Certified Buyer

    5 Jun, 2017

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    truly inspiring.

    Flipkart Customer

    Certified Buyer

    30 Jan, 2017

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    Exceptional life

    The author has amazingly expressed the environment around sir Ramanujan throughout his life. As stated in prologue, the book has really maintained balance in both the mathematics and other aspects of Ramanujan's life. The author has simplified the mathematics to make it easy read for persons knowing less mathematics. The people not knowing anything of the mathematics can also admire greatly the achievements of Ramanujan. I have fairly good background in mathematics and I had greatly enjoyed r...

    praveen verma

    Certified Buyer

    14 Jun, 2013

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    Bad book quality

    I have bought quite a number of books on flipkart. but this is the first book whose quality of paper, printing is very bad. it is printed by some delhi/noida company. after paying 400 odd rupees, it is surprising to get such a bad quality. i think the foreign edition of the book selling for 900 odd rupees would be better. do not buy this book, buy the foreign edition.

    A Majali

    Certified Buyer

    27 Apr, 2012

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    Inspiring, facinating and wholely engrossing.

    This book is a must read for students and others intellectuals and again those biography addicts.

    One of the best biography on any mathematician I have read. Kanigel has not only made it readable for a non-mathematician but has also managed to keep the intensity.
    Immense research and fantastic story building makes this book come alive.
    Gives justice to a wholly uncelebrated life of a genius called Ramanujan.

    Go on and add it to your collection!

    Ninad Shringarpure

    Certified Buyer

    20 Apr, 2012

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