Judy's Reviews > A Beautiful Mind: The Life of Mathematical Genius and Nobel Laureate John Nash

A Beautiful Mind by Sylvia Nasar
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's review
Jul 06, 2011

it was ok
Read in March, 2011

An interesting story about an amazing genius who developed mathematical game theory in his 20s that won him the Nobel prize forty years later. In those intervening years he suffered from regular bouts of paranoid schizophrenia and was institutionalized many times.

If you are NOT a mathematician, there is a lot of discussion of math theory, history, and intrigue that will go over your head--at least it went well over mine. I was tempted to pass by large sections of the book, but critical pieces of the story were embedded throughout, so that was not possible.

I did find the discussion of John Nash's mental illness fascinating, and I was surprised by both the treatment offered and the tolerance and support of the academic community. John's family relationships are more what I would expect in regards to a man who was so unreliable and difficult to be around.

By the way, if you enjoyed the movie, this is NOT the book for you. The movie was more fiction than truth, based on the story told here.

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