nLab Shiing-shen Chern

Selected writings

On principal bundles, their characteristic classes and introducing the Chern-Weil homomorphism:

  • Shiing-shen Chern, Differential geometry of fiber bundles, in: Proceedings of the International Congress of Mathematicians, Cambridge, Mass., 1950, vol. 2, pages 397-411, Amer. Math. Soc., Providence, R. I. (1952) (pdf, full proceedings vol 2 pdf)


Chen Ning Yang writes in C. N. Yang, Selected papers, 1945-1980, with commentary, W. H. Freeman and Company, San Francisco, 1983, on p. 567,

recalled in: D. Z. Zhang, C. N. Yang and contemporary mathematics The Mathematical Intelligencer 15, 13–21 (1993) (doi:10.1007/BF03024319):

In 1975, impressed with the fact that gauge fields are connections on fiber bundles, I drove to the house of S. S. Chern in El Cerrito, near Berkeley… I said I found it amazing that gauge theory are exactly connections on fiber bundles, which the mathematicians developed without reference to the physical world. I added: “this is both thrilling and puzzling, since you mathematicians dreamed up these concepts out of nowhere.” He immediately protested: “No, no. These concepts were not dreamed up. They were natural and real.”

category: people

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