Home Page of Dr Kuba Wschodni

Hello, I am Kuba Wschodni. "Kuba" is a Polish diminutive for "Jakob", which is fitting as I am only a very little man. I have an office in the upper left-hand drawer of Jaap van Oosten's desk at the Mathematical Institute.
My official address is:
Dr. K. Wschodni, c/o J. van Oosten
Mathematics Dept., Utrecht University
P.O. Box 80.010, 3508 TA Utrecht, The Netherlands.

My research interest is the mathematical foundations of music. I work in close collaboration with my friend and colleague Jaap van Oosten, who provides me with the mathematical rigour that my thoughts are so often lacking.

A recent result of ours is that Brahms' music lacks a sound logical underpinning, and that it cannot be formalized in ZFC. This generalizes a result by Ladro & Sporco (Rendiconti dei Fond. della Musica XXIV,45-189), who only show that induction fails for the Klavierstücke.
More precisely, we employ techniques from Transcendent Logic to show that by its very expressiveness, Brahms' music admits transfinite Gödelization; thus exhibiting in every purported universe B for it, a number which codes every possible extension of B. This, however, runs into a suitably formulated version of Russell's paradox.

Presently, I am working on "Crook's Conjecture" (see Burglar, Felon & Crook, Musica Universalis XXXIV, 434-529), which asserts that the famous "Waldscheinsonatas" (KV 410.34a-e) are not algebraic, but elliptic. It seems quite plausible that Yesenin-Volpin's recent refutation of the Second Incompleteness Theorem may turn out to provide the key idea in this topic.

Short biography: I was born in Klyndercz (Poland), in 1930. In 1945 my family fled to Austria (Vienna). I received my education at the k.k. Akademie für Katholische Weltanschauung und Grenzwissenschaftliche Erkenntnisse, where I made the acquaintance of Thomas Bernhard who was, already then, deeply interested in the Geisteswissenschaften; however, as he never failed to add, ``Ohne zu wissen, was die sogenannten Geisteswissenschaften eigentlich sind...'' One finds a reliable picture of the epoch in his novel Der Untergeher.

I graduated with a case study on repression in Brahms; arguing that the excessive use of the D-minor chord in Capriccio op.116 must be attributed to his subconscious awareness of an Iocaste-complex in his relationship to Clara Schumann. The thesis eventually got published in Psychoanalytica; later analysis by Jones and Bonaparte, however, revealed flaws in my work.

Without any regular position, I survived as free-lance writer of PhD theses in Philosophy, Psychology and Musicology (work which left me ample time to pursue my own interests); they still exist, filling academic libraries and carrying the names of powerful persons...

In 1955 I met Jan van Heijenoort, who embodied two of the most fascinating subjects I know: Trotskyism and Mathematical Logic. My essay Die Dialektik des Zweihändigen Klavierspiels is an example of my work of the era. I expound the theory that the Hegelian duality of thesis-antithesis (or subject-object) is perfectly mirrored in the left hand-right hand antinomy of the pre-Romantic piano literature, with Bach emphasizing the problem, Mozart denying it...until the two blend in divine synthesis with the work of Liszt; but then, as always, the infernal cycle starts anew with Ravel's Concerto for the Left Hand. The publication, in Inprecor 1959, gave rise to a heated debate among orthodox Marxists about the possible political interpretation of these ideas; some concluded that Bach is counterrevolutionary, but as yet the matter has not been resolved in a satisfactory fashion.

My attempts in Mathematical Logic remained embryonic for a long time. True, I am the inventor of the Deontic Principle ``If you can't, you shouldn't''; but to my regret the Principle has found little application, and most politicians seem to disagree with it, anyway. My efforts to find a logical form of Mertens' Principle Life is hard, but not impossible (Willem Mertens' Levensspiegel-J. van Oudshoorn) have been fruitless.

Since 1965 I live in Holland, where I find the skies and whole atmospheric context most propitious for my mental processes. I finally learnt to play the piano. My recent collaboration with Jaap van Oosten has given a new spark in my life.

I do not have my own e-mail address; please use Jaap van Oosten's: j.vanoosten@uu.nl, putting "Wschodni" in the header (I am usually sitting on his shoulder, and we get to read each other's e-mail).

Wschodni is a Polish name. Or better: it is the name "Van Oosten" in Polish notation. A Polish friend noticed this, and enquired to what degree we (that is, dr. Van Oosten and I) might be "the same, if not identical". The answer is that Our names are the same, though not identical; but for us as persons, it is the other way round (Wohltemperiertes Klavier II, Fuga XXXII, Bars 17-21).