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Quintessentially Science Fiction. An Interview with Eugenio Calabi, Hosted by Claude LeBrun, on Behalf of the Simons Center.

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In July 2019, on behalf of the Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, Claude LeBrun, Stony Brook Mathematics Department, conducted an interview with Eugenio Calabi at the University of Pennsylvania Mathematics Department. Calabi is of course primarily famous for his pioneering work on Calabi-Yau manifolds, a class of solutions of Einstein’s equations that plays a central role in current research, both in mathematics (where they connect differential geometry and algebraic geometry in a remarkable new way) and in physics (where they are used to construct model universes via string compactification). This film is partly intended as a celebration of the recent award of the Veblen Prize to Simons Center and Stony Brook faculty members Simon Donaldson, Xiuxiong Chen, and Song Sun, for work answering questions first raised by Calabi. But, more specifically, it will also help us remember Calabi’s personal role in the story, both as Xiuxiong Chen’s thesis advisor, and as the mathematical grandfather of Chen’s student Song Sun.