photo by Sarah Lavigne
Joseph Mazur is the author of Fluke: The Math and Myth of Coincidence
, an examination of the inevitability of the sublime and the unexpected.
It is a book that appeals to anyone who has ever wondered how all of the tiny decisions that happen in our lives add up to improbable wholes, and how they contribute to the most surprising moments in our lives. He tells us that if there is any likelihood that something could happen, no matter how small, it is bound to happen to someone at some time. He explores the odds of the strangest and most seemingly impossible coincidences. Mazur is a storyteller. As one of his reviewers put it, “Mazur does readers the great service of setting the arcane ideas and procedure of mathematics back in the world where they belong, the market-place, the smoky café, the classroom, the laboratory, the sidewalk, the sailboat, the rainforest.”