Teaching geometry Euclid's way?
Professor David Clark of the Mathematics Department recently gave a talk at the Honors Center on the history of teaching Euclidean geometry. His abstract follows.
The Demise and Revitalization of Euclidean Geometry
The advent of Euclid's geometry was a watershed moment in the development of western thought. Euclid demonstrated, for the first time, that a large body of knowledge could be derived from a small set of postulates through a process of pure logical reasoning by anyone who wished to do so. This insight was viewed as being so profound that Euclidean geometry became part of a standard education for the next 2000 years. But some 35 years ago a series of mathematical, scientific and social forces conspired to eliminate it from our curricula. This talk will describe those forces and present a new and updated version of Euclid's geometry designed to reinstate it.