March 2, 2021 at 4:30 pm

Mathematics Colloquium | Poetry and Mathematics, March 31

Luis Pedro Poitevin

Dr. Luis Pedro Poitevin

The Mathematics Colloquium series presents Ohio University alumnus Luis Pedro Poitevin discussing “Poetry and Mathematics” on March 31 at 4 p.m.

Poitevin is Associate Professor of Mathematics at Salem State University.

Poitevin is a bilingual poet and translator originally from Guatemala. After completing his undergraduate studies at Universidad del Valle de Guatemala and earning an M.S. in Mathematics from the OHIO College of Arts & Sciences in 1998, Poitevin finished his Ph.D. at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2006. His interests include continuous logic for metric structures, nonstandard analysis, Banach space geometry, and the interrelationship between mathematics and literature. Poetry is also a professional interest;  he is a contributor to Letras Libres and Periódico de Poesía, the poetry journal of the National Autonomous University of México (UNAM); his poems in English have appeared in Rattle and River Styx, among others.

Abstract: Since the times of Pythagoras, poetry has had some formal affinity for mathematics. Poets have sometimes drawn on mathematics for inspiration, but this is not the whole story of the affair between these two subjects. In this talk we will outline some of the highlights (some of them quite surprising) of this long-term distant relationship. We will conclude with an informal account of how some mathematical ideas can help give shape to our understanding of some aspects of poetry.

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