- Hardcover: 600 pages
- Publisher: W. H. Freeman; Third Edition edition (December 15, 1998)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 071672877X
- ISBN-13: 978-0716728771
- Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.2 x 9.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #411,301 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Basic Complex Analysis Third Edition Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I did have a few minor problems, though. While many of the exercises are good, some of them seemed rather trivial. The chapter on conformal mapping could use some work. The binding on mine started to come apart by the end of the semester, although that may have been my fault.
The book is clearly written and well-organized, with plenty of examples and exercises. My only significant criticism of the first edition was the author's tendency to label many examples of contour integration as theorems. Technically, there is nothing wrong this, but I found that some of my students tended to memorize the statements of these "theorems" rather than focus on the methods of integration discussed (for example, "Pac-Man" integrals with branch cuts along rays other than the positive real axis). Nonetheless, this is a fine text that has--not surprisingly--continued to be widely used for over two decades.
What is worse is that the examples tend to require compound knowledge. That is, they tend to test your ability to grasp more than one concept at a time instead of sequentially building up that current subjects. Also, please note that many of the examples assume that you worked out a problem in the previous exercises.
As for the lack of rigor, it can make some areas of complex variables easy (specially the areas involving deformations), while making other things much harder. Geometric intuition will be highly emphasized but poorly depicted. Overall, I hated this book because I had to beat myself up to grasp examples.
About the authors: Dr. Marsden was a truly elite ISI cited researcher and applied mathematician with a very deep understanding of the topic (he passed away last year) and Dr. Hoffman is a quality mathematician, and a gifted writer with a keen historical sense of the development of ideas within math. They make a great team.
The strength of the book, as some other reviewers have noted, is its thoroughness - the book does not skimp on proofs or on the technical development of the subject. As a student, this is very intimidating. Yet, over time, with more mathematical maturity, the book grew on me. The technical arguments that I found unnecessary and difficult to follow became enlightening and enriching, and helped me to better understand the material And the fact that it was not organized in the manner of an abstract algebra book, but rather had slight variations, and extensions of the discussions became quite appealing to me after time.
I think that one helpful standard is that the reader needs to have a solid background both in Analysis and abstract algebra (or at least a difficult upper level math class like topology). I would say that this book is written at the senior undergrad or grad level. Without a solid background, the books will be and is extremely intimidating. Perhaps it is helpful to have a second, less challenging, more computational complex analysis book beside this to get a picture of the forest instead of the trees. But other than that the book is wonderful.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
this book mostly just explains concepts, provides worked out problems and then provides problems for the reader to solve. I think this book does what is expected. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Patrick Staight
I wish there was more examples. Also, the book is a little bit too wordy. The author should use less words but more examples. Read morePublished on March 15, 2012 by James
It gets the job done. Nothing particularly thrilling, but it's not like I have a lot of experience with complex analysis textbooks. Read morePublished on April 5, 2011 by Alec Cooper
This book has excellent examples and most of the proofs are very easy to understand. It's a great book to use if you're learning complex analysis on your own. Read morePublished on June 18, 2010 by Fixed Point
It's a good book. The wording is precise and clear, there are plenty of examples and diagrams, and it seems to be well organized. Read morePublished on February 3, 2009 by Brad Conte
I needed this book for a class. I got it new for half of my local bookstore's price. Quick shipping, perfect condition!Published on January 7, 2009 by agouge
Used this book as an undergraduate... hated it... I kept using a little thin old edition of "Complex Variables and Applications" by Churchhill to actually teach math using... Read morePublished on July 9, 2007 by J. Rounds