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Math Help - Bourbaki, Nicolas

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    Bourbaki, Nicolas

    Yet again, I'm not qute sure how to formulate the question and what exactly to ask.
    I've heard some time ago about the effort of a group of french mathematicians to
    write self-contained exposition of modern mathematics (as it was in the 50s and 60s).
    starting from bottom up. They wrote under the pseudonym Nicolas Bourbaki. I
    t seemed very atractive as idea to me, so I made a note to myself to read it when I
    have enough time. Finaly that time arrived and I started.
    Immediately I "crashed" head-first into a new, very strange ideas there about "methamatematics",
    "assemblies", "substitution criterias" etc. Apparently the text describes some system of
    formal reasoning about symbols that are concatenated together. Being amateur
    mathematician I found this very foreign, really. I tried to supplement my understanding
    with other sources from Internet and I found none, except ones, citing Bourbaki. Instead I
    found terms like propositional and first order logic. So my question is have the foundations
    of mathematics moved away since then. Is it worthy to read and try to understand this first part
    of the book 1?
    My coverage of this parts of mathematics include:
    1. Introduction to Set Theory, 3rd edt by Czech and Hrbacek (seems to reffer the reader to study logic but avoids the extensive notation in favour of text explanations)
    2. A First Course in Absract Algebra, 7th Edition by Fralegih (actually, the second set of N.Bourbaki books about algebra are the really interesting thing for me, but I wanted
    to start from the beginning...)

    So having said that to prevent someone to think of me as too amateurish, to put the question again:
    Should I get better payoff if i read instead some introductory logic book?
    Last edited by mrproper; October 18th 2012 at 07:55 AM.
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    Re: Bourbaki, Nicolas

    Quote Originally Posted by mrproper View Post
    They wrote under the pseudonym Nicolas Bourbaki. I
    t seemed very atractive as idea to me, so I made a note to myself to read it when I
    have enough time. Finaly that time arrived and I started.
    Immediately I "crashed" head-first into a new, very strange ideas there about "methamatematics",

    Should I instead read some introductory logic book?
    I am not sure that the ideas of the Bourbaki are still relevant to any current practices. I had to translate most of their work as part of my graduate work but that was in the 60's.

    There is a good compact set theory book by Charles Pinter. Pinter did his doctoral in Paris on logic. That may be a good reference for you.
    Thanks from mrproper
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