Summary and Info
This book provides a rapid overview of the basic methods and concepts in mechanics for beginning Ph.D. students and advanced undergraduates in applied mathematics or related fields. It is based on a graduate course given in 2006-07 at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences. Among other topics, the book introduces Newton's law, action principles, Hamilton-Jacobi theory, geometric wave theory, analytical and numerical statistical mechanics, discrete and continuous quantum mechanics, and quantum path-integral methods. The focus is on fundamental mathematical methods that provide connections between seemingly unrelated subjects. An example is Hamilton-Jacobi theory, which appears in the calculus of variations, in Fermat's principle of classical mechanics, and in the geometric theory of dispersive wavetrains. The material is developed in a sequence of simple examples and the book can be used in a one-semester class on classical, statistical, and quantum mechanics. Some familiarity with differential equations is required but otherwise the book is self-contained. In particular, no previous knowledge of physics is assumed. Titles in this series are copublished with the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at New York University.
More About the Author
The Debate Society is a Brooklyn, New York-based devised theatre company founded by Hannah Bos, Paul Thureen, and Oliver Butler in 2004. The company's first show, A Thought About Raya, began as Bos and Thureen's senior thesis at Vassar College, where they met.
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