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Representation theory and homological stability

4:00 pm Thursday, September 2, 2010
Benson Farb (University of Chicago)

In this talk I will explain a connection between the two topics in the title. The connection between these very different subjects appears as part of the theory of "representation stability". Tom Church and I originally came up with this theory as a broad generalization of classical homological stability. We came to realize, however, that representation stability provides a framework for finding and predicting patterns in many other areas of mathematics, from classical representation theory to cohomology of groups and varieties to Lie algebras to combinatorics to counting problems in number theory. I will try to make this talk accessible to first year graduate students.

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