Person: Warschawski, Stefan E
Stefan E Warschawski was a Belarussian-born American mathematician who was known for his research on complex analysis and in particular on conformal maps.
Mathematical Profile (Excerpt):
- At the time that Warschawski was born, Lida was part of Russia but reverted to Poland in 1919.
- Despite the fact that the city was controlled by either Russia or Poland, the Warschawski household were German speaking.
- After completing his studies at the gymnasium, Warschawski entered the University of Königsberg.
- Although the university was staffed by leading mathematicians like Landau, Courant, and Herglotz, whose courses he took, it was Alexander Ostrowski, at that time a privatdozent, who supervised Warschawski's research.
- Ostrowski had taken up the position in Göttingen in 1923 but when Warschawski began his studies in 1926 he had just returned from a year of study in Britain at the universities of Oxford, Cambridge and Edinburgh.
- He had not been supervising Warschawski for long when he was offered the chair of mathematics at the University of Basel.
- Warschawski moved to Basel with his supervisor and there completed working on his thesis on the boundary behaviour of conformal mappings.
- After the award of his doctorate Warschawski was offered a position back at Göttingen and he returned there to start teaching courses in session 1930-31.
- Warschawski realised that he could not make a career in Germany and he was helped by Julius Wolff to obtain a one year post at the University of Utrecht in Holland.
- Warschawski was immensely grateful to Wolff for helping him to escape from the Nazis, but Wolff himself suffered the fate he helped others avoid for he died during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands.
- Warschawski published a major 30 page paper On the higher derivatives at the boundary in conformal mapping in the Transactions of the American Mathematical Society in 1935 but had to move from one short term post to the next until he was offered a permanent position in 1939 at Washington University in St Louis.
- Bergman, also forced to leave Nazi Germany, was on the faculty at Brown when Warschawski joined, as was Bers who was also undertaking research relevant to the war effort.
- Warschawski was appointed chairman of the Mathematics Department in the Institute of Technology at the University of Minnesota in 1952 and was highly successful in building the Department over the following eleven years.
Born 18 April 1904, Lida, Russia (now Belarus). Died 5 May 1989, San Diego, California, USA.
View full biography at MacTutor
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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