Manzanar Murakami As Radical Mathematician

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Abstract

In Karen Tei Yamashita’s Tropic of Orange, characters attempt to make meaning of the many complex structures in which they are situated. In his unique meaning-making process, Manzanar Murakami, a homeless Sansei, “conducts” the Los Angeles traffic with a silver baton from atop a highway overpass. In conducting his music, Murakami per- forms complex mathematics, finding meaning in connection by mapping the rhythmic flow of humans, machines, and goods. Through his baton, to the sounds of a beautiful orchestra, he translates precisely the relationships he sees before him. Murakami’s music and Yamashita’s fantastic images constitute a “mathematical realism,” a lens through which to explore the structures and relationships of modern transnational life.

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Logan Bishop-Van Horn

Logan Bishop-Van Horn

Logan is a sophomore studying Physics and Mathematics. He is currently engaged in Physics research at Clark, focusing speci cally on the behavior of superconduc- tors in pulsed magnetic elds. Born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico, he enjoys hiking, biking, playing with animals, trying to get things to work, and sometimes reading and writing. Logan’s favorite books include Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle and Janna Levin’s A Madman Dreams of Turning Machines. He plans to continue his education in Physics after his graduation in 2017.