Noether, Emmy

Noether, Emmy (Amalie Emmy Noether) ämälˈyə ĕmˈē nöˈtər [key], 1882–1935, German mathematician, b. Erlangen, Germany, grad. Univ. of Erlangen (Ph.D. 1908). She made important contributions to the development of abstract algebra, which studies the formal properties, e.g., associative law, commutative law, and distributive law, of algebraic operations. In 1915 she joined David Hilbert and C. F. Klein at Göttingen Univ. at their invitation, and finally secured an official appointment there in 1919 (although without a salary until after 1922). At Göttingen, Noether developed the theories of ideals and of noncommutative algebras; she also proved two theorems concerning the connection between symmetries and conservation laws, the first of which has been particularly important to the development of modern physics. When the Nazis dismissed her and other Jewish professors in 1933, she immigrated to the United States, briefly teaching at Bryn Mawr College and at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, before she died.

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