A Beautiful Mind (book)

A Beautiful Mind (1998) is a biography of Nobel Prize-winning economist and mathematician John Forbes Nash, Jr. by Sylvia Nasar, professor of journalism at Columbia University. An unauthorized work, it won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1998 and was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in biography. It inspired the 2001 film by the same name.

A Beautiful Mind
A Beautiful Mind (book)
Front cover
AuthorSylvia Nasar
Original titleA Beautiful Mind: a Biography of John Forbes Nash, Jr., Winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, 1994
CountryUnited States
Published1998 (Simon & Schuster)
Media typePrint (Hardcover, paperback)
510/.92 B 21
LC ClassQA29.N25 N37 1998


Starting with his childhood, the book covers Nash's years at Princeton and MIT, his work for the RAND Corporation, his family and his struggle with schizophrenia.

Although Nasar notes that Nash did not consider himself a homosexual, she describes his arrest for indecent exposure and firing from RAND amid the suspicion that he was, then considered grounds for revoking one's security clearance.[1]

The book ends with Nash being awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 1994. The book is a detailed description of many aspects of Nash's life, including the nature of his mathematical genius, and a close examination of his personality and motivations.


The book was widely praised. John Milnor notes the ethical issues posed by the book, an unauthorized biography and prepared without the cooperation of the subject.[2]

The book won the 1998 National Book Critics Circle Award for biography, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for biography, and was shortlisted for the Rhône-Poulenc Prize in 1999.[3] The book also appeared on the New York Times Bestseller List for biography.


The book inspired the film A Beautiful Mind, directed by Ron Howard and starring Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly. It won numerous awards, including the Academy Award for Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay for 2001 at the 74th Academy Awards.


  1. ^ A Beautiful Mind, pp. 185-186
  2. ^ John Milnor, Review -John Nash and A Beautiful Mind, American Mathematical Society, October 1998
  3. ^ Prizes for Science Books previous winners and shortlists, The Royal Society website

External links

A Beautiful Mind

A Beautiful Mind may refer to:

A Beautiful Mind (book), about the life of John Forbes Nash, Jr.

A Beautiful Mind (film), the 2001 film adaptation of the same title

A Beautiful Mind (soundtrack), the associated soundtrack album

A Beautiful Mind (TV series), Korean series starring Jang Hyuk and Park So-dam

Donald J. Newman

Donald J. (D. J.) Newman (July 27, 1930 – March 28, 2007) was an American mathematician and professor, excelling at the Putnam mathematics competition while an undergraduate at City College of New York and New York University, and later receiving his PhD from Harvard University in 1953.

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