Hans Rademacher

3rd April 1892 to 7th February 1969

Hans Rademacher, signature, University of Breslau, 1931-1932

German mathematician Hans Rademacher received his PhD (‘Eindeutige Abbildungen und Meßbarkeit’) from the University of Göttingen in 1916.

At Breslau, Rademacher taught on the same seminar series as Siegfried Marck  in the academic year 1930-1931: ‘General lectures for all teachers – a complete lecture. See the announcements in the faculties’ departments’. These seminars constituted part of the ‘universitas literarum’, and were held on Tuesdays from 8pm to 9pm. The universitas literarum was a rounded approach to learning that differentiated Breslau from the purely technical universities of the period. Through such courses, Breslau was an example of what was known as a ‘full university’ (Volluniversität).

Universitas literarum, University of Breslau, 1930-1931

Rademacher also taught a number of courses on mathematics and astronomy, as can be seen in the extract from the handbook, below, alongside his colleague Radon. These were again part of the universitas literarum approach to learning, and included functional theory, analytical number theory and a mathematics seminar, held on Fridays from 5pm to 7pm.

Hans Rademacher, University of Breslau, 1930-1931

Radamacher also taught pure and applied mathematics at Breslau, alongside his colleagues including, again, Johann Radon.

Dr Rademacher, mathematics, University of Breslau, 1930-1931

Finally, in the academic year 1930-1931, Professor Rademacher taught  a mathematics seminar, on a course for which he was the director. His term-time address was as follows – and this road can be seen in the map below.

Professor Hans Rademacher, 1930-1931
Nachtigallen Weg, Breslau, 1931

Throughout his life, Rademacher was interested in human rights issues, and in Breslau he was a member of the International League for the Rights of Men; he was also a pacifist. Given his interests in this political context, he was removed from his professorship in 1934.

Rademacher moved to the USA, and his wife and baby son joined him a year later. He gained a post at the University of Pennsylvania, where he stayed until his retirement in 1962.

Rademacher carried out research into analytic number theory, mathematical genetics, the theory of functions of a real variable, and quantum theory. He is known for Rademacher’s theorem, the Rademacher function, the Rademacher–Menchov theorem, and the Rademacher distribution.

All black and white extracts on this page are from the 'Vorlesungs und Personal Verzeichnis der Schlesischen Friedrich Wilhelms Universität zu Breslau Winter Semester 1930/1931', and the equivalent handbook for 1935-1936, available online at the University of Wrocław.

The map extract is from the excellent fotopolska.eu.