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  • Author: Wolfgang Achtner x
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Abstract

Hermann Grassmann is known to be the founder of modern vector and tensor calculus. Having as a theologian no formal education in mathematics at a university he got his basic ideas for this mathematical innovation at least to some extent from listening to Schleiermacher’s lectures on Dialectics and, together with his brother Robert, reading its publication in 1839. The paper shows how the idea of unity and various levels of reality first formulated in Schleiermacher’s talks about religion in 1799 were transformed by him into a philosophical system in his dialectics and then were picked up by Grassmann and operationalized in his philosophical-mathematical treatise on the extension theory (German: Ausdehnungslehre) in 1844.