Geometric Analysis and Nonlinear Partial Differential Equations

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This book is not a textbook, but rather a coherent collection of papers from the field of partial differential equations. Nevertheless we believe that it may very well serve as a good introduction into some topics of this classical field of analysis which, despite of its long history, is highly modem and well prospering. Richard Courant wrote in 1950: It has always been a temptationfor mathematicians to present the crystallized product of their thought as a deductive general theory and to relegate the individual mathematical phenomenon into the role of an example. The reader who submits to the dogmatic form will be easily indoctrinated. Enlightenment, however, must come from an understanding of motives; live mathematical development springs from specific natural problems which can be easily understood, but whose solutions are difficult and demand new methods or more general significance. We think that many, if not all, papers of this book are written in this spirit and will give the reader access to an important branch of analysis by exhibiting interest- ing problems worth to be studied. Most of the collected articles have an extensive introductory part describing the history of the presented problems as well as the state of the art and offer a well chosen guide to the literature. This way the papers became lengthier than customary these days, but the level of presentation is such that an advanced graduate student should find the various articles both readable and stimulating.