Stanley Tennenbaum
American Original


Stanley Tennenbaum (1927 – 2005) was an American mathematician specializing in mathematical logic. Educated at the University of Chicago when that institution was headed by Robert Hutchins, he began making significant contributions to mathematical logic while yet an undergraduate, which productivity continued throughout his life. As interested in education as he was in mathematics, he taught mathematics and philosophy at a number of universities such as the U of Pennsylvania and the U of Rochester, strongly influencing many students along the way. He further spent much time at the Institute For Advanced Study, Kurt Godel one of his principal professional associates, and is known for Tennenbaum’s Theorem which states that no countable nonstandard model of Peano arithmetic can be recursive.

Stan was also, if I may quote myself, “the man who was to have (outside of my father) the greatest influence on my life, dwarfing all others, the most scintillating, charismatic, exciting, mesmerizing man I’ve ever personally known”.

By way of homage, this simple website is to publish a memoir of my experience with Stan, the majority of that experience while living as a sophomore studying mathematics at the U of Rochester with the Tennenbaum family from the Spring of 1966 to the Spring of 1967. The purpose is to honor Stan as I can, in small way ensuring his memory and, hopefully, his spirit.

Extremely gregarious, Stan touched literally hundreds if not thousands of lives, often very significantly. Should you be one of those, I invite you to recount your memories, thoughts, experiences in COMMENTS. Should this take more ambitious form you may wish to contact me regarding adding further to this site.

Rob Tully

Memoir - Preface ↠


I am delighted to announce the first extension to the Stanley Tennenbaum Memoir website since its inception 03AUG2015. Appearing now on the main menu is a 'Contributions' section devoted to significant offerings from others who were close associates of Stan's. Three papers appear in this initial presentation. The first is from Jonathan Tennenbaum, Stan's eldest son, with the most complete statement on record thus far of Stan's relationship to Education. The second is from Newcomb Greenleaf, a young mathematician and intimate of Stan's in the middle 60's at the U of Rochester. Newc details that period at the New Mexico State University in the 70's when Stan was the central figure ensuring and promoting the life of Errett Bishop's work in 'Constructive' mathematics. The third is a series of fascinating recollections from Bill Howard, a well known figure in Mathematical Logic and lifelong friend of Stan's since their student days at the U of Chicago. Should this inspire others of you to contribute, please do be in touch with me. A final (off the wall) note, there is a very interesting section in Siobhan Roberts biography of John Conway, 'Genius At Play', on Stan, Godel, and Conway (p. 210-212).

Posted: May 12th 2017