**In Memory**

Yesterday we lost an inspirational educator, respected author, trusted partner, and friend. Last night we learned that on Wednesday, December 3 at 9:30 am ET, Jim passed away peacefully surrounded by family at his home in Toronto, Canada. Read the official media release.

There’s something to be said for hard work. In the last forty-plus years since two of his students at McMaster University suggested he write his own calculus book, world-renowned author and mathematician James Stewart has basically never stopped writing. Having essentially devoted his life to mathematics, Jim has published over seventy textbooks, releasing a new text or edition almost every year. But calculus isn’t Jim’s only passion. In addition to being a mathematician he is also a concert-level violinist and music philanthropist. These very different themes have played an integral role in his life as told in the upcoming feature documentary, “The Integral Man,” created by Auratic Media. Recently, Engaging Minds sat down with Jim at his home in Toronto, Canada to discuss his love of mathematics, how students learn, and the role of technology in calculus education.

## Watch excerpts from our interview with James Stewart below.

As we sat with Jim, we gathered a wealth of insights about teaching and learning. Here are a few of our favorites:

- Technology brings calculus to life. Calculus can be regarded as the mathematics of motion. It shows things approaching other things. This can be hard to convey that in a static object like a book, but on the screen, calculus comes alive.
- Jim wants students to see that calculus is both practical and beautiful. Throughout his books, he incorporates that message with the practical aspect of mathematics. Solving problems is very powerful, but that is only one aspect of calculus; Jim also wants students to discover the inherent beauty of calculus. This is challenging to convey because one cannot explain or realize it all at once—it is cumulative.
- Jim mentions that when students come to his office for help on a particular topic, and other students then bring similar problems, he realizes the topics that may need further explanation or pedagogical improvement. When he began writing his first edition years ago, Jim paid attention to his students, and to the questions that they were asking.

Want more? You can read the transcript of our interview with James Stewart.

I have been teaching Calculus for last 8 to 9 years. I have used different books, and the first time I started using Calculus by James Stewart was in Fall 2010. Since then I fall in love with the writing style of Prof. James. The way he related the concepts of Calculus with the nature and the physics behind it is amazing.

One of the key facts in teaching calculus is the engagement of student in the learning process and explaining the Calculus concepts and ideas with very simple examples from the real life. Because in that way student will grasp the essence of Calculus and get motivations to further apply to different problems. The classes I teach consist of students from very different disciplines and interest and in order to keep their interest and motivation live in the course, it is very important to bring examples from diverse areas and asked them to further explore the possibilities of its applications.

In short I totally agree to the teaching philosophy of Prof. James. First thing I do is to keep the interest live and motivate others to the beauty of Calculus.

It is sad to know the demise of such a great mathematician. We have used his calculus book for a long time in our courses. His legacy remains.

Thanks to a great mind for helping us common folks the beauty of mathematics.

I am sad to know this. I am a Vietnamese and never had a chance to meet him, but so much respect I have for this man. Thank you Jim for your significant contribution to this world.

Sad to learn about his demise of a wonderful Mathematician.Got know about his wonderful books on Calculus only in 2012 since then i started liking the subject.Thanks a lot.

Dear Jim was a l-o-n-g-time friend. We met in 1971 and have been in contact ever since. The great humor of our meeting is the supreme irony of the situation. I was heading over to the Museum of Modern Art in NYC and saw this guy standing on the corner intently gazing at a map. It appeared he was confused. So I asked if he needed any help. Turns out he was also planning to visit MoMA as well. This was his first time in NYC as per a Math Conference. Of course, since Manhattan’s layout is designed by numbers (12th St, 34th St, 5th Ave, 6th Ave, etc) being ‘lost’ was a real joke. Anyway, we went to the Museum, talked a great deal, had lunch, and remained friends ever since. Thus, from Jim’s 1971 April NYC trip to my final Toronto visit this past November, we always joked about how the “best math guy got confused by a number grid.” Will deeply miss this dear friend and fine person!

I never meet Dr. Stewart, but I studying his book “concepts&contexts” now. Even though it a little hard to me, I would say it is a good text book. Just show my respect to Dr. Stewart.

I living in Venezuela, I study system engenieer in Caracas, Venezuela. I have in my desktop the big book Calculus of James Stewart. I learn a lot of this book. Greetings and I sorry for you lost 🙁

You’re always alive.

I learned calculus in ’94 & ’95 using Stewart’s book … Best experience in math. Reading the book is enough to make you passionate about math ..

As a retired Engineer I still ‘poke around’ looking at Calculus and Science texts. I came across this text in a ‘discount text store’ and sat down to read through a section or two. It was amazing to discover how simply well stated and clear the text was. Ordered a copy.

Viewed some of the on-line interviews and was further intrigued.

So sorry I missed him in the classroom. I thank you for allowing me to comment.

Dr. Stewart books for me are the best I haven’t enyoy math this much in my life y read his pre-calculus book and now I’m reading his calculus book and I never had a calculus class in my life I was so scare went I started calculus 1 this year that I though did I will fail but reading his calculus books explain everything so good I lost my fear of the class I’m very please with the book the only I bathe to say to Dr. Stewart is thank you for al you’re knowledge that you habe share withing you re books it has help a lot for me and muy friends

It is very tragic. James stewart was a great educator. His book is a good reference for teaching and learning calculus. we should continue his way.

Story of Stewart Calculus at KFUPM:

At King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals, Saudi Arabia (KFUPM), we change the Calculus Textbook after every 4-5 years. It is a policy matter. The Stewart Calculus was introduced here in 2007. In 2011, a committee of 8 mathematician started looking for its replacement. Around 15 tittles from different publishers were evaluated. But the committee failed to find the replacement. In 2012, the committee was directed to ignore the Stewart Calculus in the Evaluation Process. Eventually, a best possible choice was brought in.

Just after a year, the Math Dept. started receiving complaints about the new choice both from the students and the instructors. As a result, the Stewart Calculus is back in the Dept.

It seems we will have a long lasting friendship with Stewart. I can state without any reservation that “The Calculus cannot live without Stewart at least in this decade”.

May Allah keep Jame Stewart’s soul in peace!

Dr. Stewart:

May the road rise up to meet you.

May the wind always be at your back.

May the sun shine warm upon your face,

and rains fall soft upon your fields.

And until we meet again,

May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

I’m sure that He is doing that now. Your calculus texts have been an inspiration for my teaching for many years, and although we did not meet in this lifetime, you had an amazing effect upon my interaction with my students.

First year university student here. I am very inspired. My goal is to see the beauty in calculus as he did.

I learned so many things through his book and website. I want to express gratitude to him.

God rest him in pace! His books on Calculus are fundamental references, very didactical and inspirational.

Even though Dr. Stewart has passed on, his influence as an educator will have no end. As future educators will pass on the insights he provides to their students. Seeing his explanations for the multi-variable calculus parts are really helping me understand these concepts very quickly. Other texts get jumbled in jargon for it to make sense or are watered-down by over-simplification of given examples.

I was a tutor for engineering students in 1982-1983 while Dr Stewart was the coordinator of the Calculus course in McMaster university during my Ph. D. Study Dr Stewart was very helpful and kind person giving me useful advices. It is a big loss for math to hear that he has passed away.

My condolences to his family and publisher. Great book to learned calculus from but for me it was the second book that i learned cal from. The first book from another author things i missed. Then i bought james book and learned the things i missed from another author.

I’m an engeneering student from Argentina. When I found Stewart’s Calculus in our University’s library, I found more than an outstanding book. That book is one of the recommended books for the subject “Calculus I” in the University. I’ve never seen that quality of explanations, with the exact words. You can understand any math topic reading “The Stewart”, like we call the book in my class. I have more than a giant “thanks” and a acknowledgement to say to this super author.

I was on of many students who have you Prof. Stewart textbook. Thank you for your great work. Life is short, Education is long!