Today I read about the death of john Nash and his wife. John Nash taught at Princeton, a mathematics teacher. Another STEM teacher is gone, Professor Nash. He came from West Virginia, coal miners country. His family if not involved in mining was supported by those who were. Mining coal, deep in the earth, dangerous, dark, toxic, work. What it was we used before petroleum crude oil, coal was the country’s fuel source.
No.” The people of West Virginia were always a bit different, not the Virginians of Monticello, or the birthplace of presidents, these were not the owners of vast plantations or read and schooled in Locke’s and Hobbe’s. They started mining coal in the mid 19 th Century in West Virginia, they had no slaves to head down into the mines. They were the poor, the poorest of the poor, doing the dirtiest of the jobs. Interestingly enough after a day in the mines they came out blacker than any slave in the all of Virginia.
After the advent of the civil war, West Virgina stayed in the Union breaking off from Virginia and siding with the north during the war between the states. Today, West Virginia is the lowest of the states in college educated adults, less than 20%, the highest rates of obesity, smoking, and RX drug abuse. Most of the economy depended upon coal production. It was in this landscape that John Forbes Nash Jr. was born into Nash was a mathematical genius and eventually won the Nobel Prize in Economists. After attending Princeton University and other colleges, receiving his doctorate from the former,he began to teach at Princeton University.
His career was most active in the 1950’s for a period of about ten years in which he explored these complicated mathematical concepts. He was also plagued his whole life with schizophrenia. His diagnosis of schizophrenia, at the normal age of presentation the late teens for men, displayed the tell tale signs of the illness. Embarrassing for men at any age or social situation. Not the psychiatric illness du Jour that the title schizophrenia held in the 1970’s when it was often confused with manic depression and then later bi-polar disorder.
This caused a multitude of problems for his wife, they eventually divorced, but remained living together and supportive of each other. She especially cared for him, whom separated with him after having several breakdowns with reality. He received several academic scholarships, The Westinghouse Scholarship and various others. After a successful recovery from his severe bouts with scizophrenia, they were married agin in 2001.
After at teaching at Princeton and receiving the Nobel Prize in the 1950’s, he was finally able to come to the awards ceremony and complete it was o receive his Nobel prize in 1994 in Economists. His game theory, differential geometry, and differential equations were key components in the mathematicians win of the Nobel Prize in Economist. The keys to the game theory is to process out each and every outcome or possible scenario, by formula, incorporating the idea that multiple outcomes can occur.
The mathematics, physics, and science communities will hold Mr. John Nash and his Partner, wife Alicia , in the highest regard for his contributions to the field. The relationship of mathematical formularies and game theory, differential geometry. The world is at a loss with one less professor and one less mathematician. And the loss of a remarkable, patient, and steadfast force I his wife Alicia