PROF. CRAIG FRASER

Name: Craig Fraser

Title/Position: Professor

Office Phone: 416-978-5135

Office Location: Room 317, Old Vic

Email: craig.fraser@utoronto.ca

Office Hours and/or Leave Status: 1:00-2:30 on Wed.

Degrees: B.A. (Hon.), M.A., Ph.D

My primary area of research is the history of analysis and mechanics in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with particular attention to foundational and conceptual questions. I have written an account of the original formulation by Jean d’Alembert of “d’Alembert’s principle” (1743) in dynamics. I have documented a major foundational shift in the writings on calculus of Euler and Lagrange as the calculus was separated from geometry and made part of pure analysis. I am currently completing a detailed study of the evolution of the calculus of variations in the nineteenth century, focusing on the work of such mathematicians as Hamilton, Jacobi, Mayer and Hilbert. A secondary field of interest is the history of cosmology, particularly the relationship between relativistic cosmology and observational cosmology in the twentieth century.

I teach courses at the undergraduate and graduate level on the history of mathematics and the history of astronomy.

Publications:

"Nonstandard Analysis, Infinitesimals and the History of the Calculus," in David E. Rowe and Wann-Sheng Horng (Eds.), A Delicate Balance. Global Perspectives on Innovation and Tradition in the History of Mathematics A Festschrift in Honor of Joseph W. Dauben

(Birkhauser, 2015)

"Sufficient Conditions, Fields and the Calculus of Variations,” Historia Mathematica 36 (2009), pp. 420-427

The Cosmos: A Historical Perspective (Greenwood Publishers, 2006).

“The Calculus of Variations: A Historical Survey,” in A History of Analysis, Ed. H. N. Jahnke, (American Mathematical Society, 2003), pp. 355-384.

"History of Mathematics in the Eighteenth Century", in Roy Porter (Ed.), The Cambridge History of Science Volume 4 Eighteenth-Century Science (2003), pp. 305-327.

Academics