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Let $C : sAb \to Ch_\bullet^+$ be the chains/Moore complex functor of the Dold-Kan correspondence.
Let $(sAb, \otimes)$ be the standard monoidal category structure given degreewise by the tensor product on Ab and let $(Ch_\bullet^+, \otimes)$ be the standard monoidal structure on the category of chain complexes.
For $A,B \in sAb$ two abelian simplicial groups, the Alexander-Whitney map is the natural transformation on chain complexes
defined on two $n$-simplices $a \in A_n$ and $b \in B_n$ by
where the front face map $\tilde d^p$ is that induced by
and the back face $d^q_0$ map is that induced by
This AW map restricts to the normalized chains complex
The Alexander-Whitney map is an oplax monoidal transformation that makes $C$ and $N$ into oplax monoidal functors.
Beware that the AW map is not symmetric. For details see monoidal Dold-Kan correspondence.
(Eilenberg-Zilber/Alexander-Whitney deformation retraction)
Let
and denote
by $N(A), N(B) \,\in\, Ch^+_\bullet =$ ConnectiveChainComplexes their normalized chain complexes,
by $A \otimes B \,\in\, sAb$ the degreewise tensor product of abelian groups,
by $N(A) \otimes N(B)$ the tensor product of chain complexes.
Then there is a deformation retraction
where
$\nabla_{A,B}$ is the Eilenberg-Zilber map;
$\Delta_{A,B}$ is the Alexander-Whitney map.
For unnormalized chain complexes, where we have a homotopy equivalence, this is the original Eilenberg-Zilber theorem (Eilenberg & Zilber 1953, Eilenberg & MacLane 1954, Thm. 2.1). The above deformation retraction for normalized chain complexes is Eilenberg & MacLane 1954, Thm. 2.1a. Both are reviewed in May 1967, Cor. 29.10. Explicit description of the homotopy operator is given in Gonzalez-Diaz & Real 1999).
Alexander-Whitney map
The Eilenberg-Zilber theorem is due to
Samuel Eilenberg, Joseph Zilber, On Products of Complexes, Amer. Jour. Math. 75 (1): 200–204, (1953) (jstor:2372629, doi:10.2307/2372629)
Samuel Eilenberg, Saunders MacLane, Section 2 of: On the Groups $H(\Pi,n)$, II: Methods of Computation, Annals of Mathematics, Second Series, Vol. 60, No. 1 (Jul., 1954), pp. 49-139 (jstor:1969702)
using the definition of the Eilenberg-Zilber map in:
Review:
Peter May, Section 29 of: Simplicial objects in algebraic topology , Chicago Lectures in Mathematics, University of Chicago Press 1967 (ISBN:9780226511818, djvu, pdf)
Rocio Gonzalez-Diaz, Pedro Real, A Combinatorial Method for Computing Steenrod Squares, Journal of Pure and Applied Algebra 139 (1999) 89-108 (arXiv:math/0110308)
Last revised on September 13, 2021 at 07:36:46. See the history of this page for a list of all contributions to it.