Person: Pastor, Julio Rey
Rey Pastor was a Spanish mathematician and historian of science who was important in developing mathematics in Argentina.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- This was of great importance since it would transcend to Latin America through mathematicians such as Rey Pastor, Esteban Terradas and many others.
- This was to have a direct effect on Julio Rey Pastor.
- Educated at home until the age of twelve, Rey Pastor began studying at his local secondary school, El Instituto Sagasta, in 1900.
- Between 1908 and 1910, Rey Pastor founded the Real Sociedad Matemática Espanola with the support of José Echegaray and General Benitez.
- In 1911, Pastor was appointed secretary of the society and, in the same year, he became Professor of Mathematical Analysis at the University of Oviedo.
- As a consequence, Rey Pastor was accused of being unpatriotic and his reputation suffered significantly.
- An example of his frank discourse may be seen his 1915 Inaugural Discourse, where Rey Pastor discusses the development of science in Spain.
- Between 1911 and 1916, La Junta Para Ampliación de Estudios funded Rey Pastor to carry out a series of visits to Germany.
- In 1915 Rey Pastor moved to a chair at Madrid University, where he published the highly acclaimed, Fundamentos de la geometría proyectiva superior Ⓣ(Fundamentals of higher projective geometry).
- Rey Pastor was invited by the Institución Cultura Española to lecture at the University of Buenos Aires in 1917.
- It has been asserted that Don Rey Pastor was responsible for the creation of a distinctive Argentinean School of mathematical research and the reconstruction of science in Argentina.
- Between then and Rey Pastor's arrival, there had been some small improvement in the engineering courses, but all the other further mathematics courses were in a severe state of stagnation.
- Rey Pastor needed to persuade the engineering professors of the importance of mathematics beyond the elementary textbooks, which they had previously been using.
- In this course, Rey Pastor presented his students with the concept of geometry based on group theory, using methods of establishing invariants of each group, with topological methods being the most general.
- As a consequence, Rey Pastor succeeded in gaining popularity amongst the students, whilst receiving stern criticism from his contemporary old school professors, who regarded him a foreign usurper.
- Rey Pastor focused mainly on teaching engineering, but he recruited many pure mathematics students to his courses since he regarded the engineering courses on the techniques of calculation good preparation for pure mathematicians.
- Rey Pastor founded the Sociedad Matemática Argentino in 1924.
- In the 1940's, Pastor's best students began gaining international recognition.
- In 1931, Rey Pastor published one of his most elegant works on analysis in the Rendiconti del Circolo Matematico di Palermo, an Italian mathematical journal.
- This article by Rey Pastor is framed by a long series of works, begun at the beginning of the twentieth century, on problems of summing series, convergence algorithms, singular integrals and comparative studies of series and integrals.
- The same year Rey Pastor presented a summary of his ideas in his paper given to the International Congress of Mathematicians at Bologna, which he attended with a large group of his Argentinean students.
- The themes which Rey Pastor dealt with in this period had considerable influence on the development of Argentinean mathematics.
- The history of mathematics had always interested Rey Pastor and late in his career his interests in historical topics extended to cartography.
- Examining his textbooks gives us insight into Rey Pastor's ideas concerning teaching of mathematics.
- In the introduction to Algabraic Analysis, Rey Pastor comments that rather than follow the general tendency of elevating elemental problems to the point of abstraction, it is his goal to simplify complicated questions whilst maintaining a rigorous approach.
- According to Rey Pastor however, it is a didactic mistake and historically absurd to attempt to approach the concepts of analysis in this contrary manner.
Born 16 August 1888, Logrono, Spain. Died 21 February 1962, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
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Adapted from other CC BY-SA 4.0 Sources:
- O’Connor, John J; Robertson, Edmund F: MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive