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John Nash, Graduate Photo
John Nash, Jr., c. 1948



John Nash

How can I obtain a copy of Nash’s dissertation?

Mr. Nash’s dissertation, Non-cooperative Games, is available on this web site in PDF format. The dissertation is provided for research use only. Researchers must make a written request for permission to quote or publish manuscripts to the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections.

Non-cooperative Games, dissertation, John Nash, May 1950 ( 1.2M )

Note: Chapter 6 ofThe Essential John Nash contains a facsimile of Professor Nash's 1951 Ph.D. dissertation on non-cooperative games.

The Essential John Nash
Edited by Harold W. Kuhn and Sylvia Nasar
(Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press), 2001.
ISBN: 0691095272

In the movie A Beautiful Mind there is a scene in which faculty members present their pens to John Nash. What is the origin of the pen ceremony? When did it start?

The scene in the movie A Beautiful Mind in which mathematics professors ritualistically present pens to Nash was completely fabricated in Hollywood. No such custom exists. What it symbolizes is that Nash was accepted and recognized in the mathematics community for his accomplishments, in the same way that the old professor was recognized early in the movie when Nash was a young man. While some movies are based on books, the film A Beautiful Mind states that it was inspired by the life of John Nash. There are many discrepancies between the book and the film.

May I see John Nash’s graduate school records?

Mr. Nash’s records, and those of other undergraduate and graduate students, are restricted. Access to the academic records of living individuals is protected under the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974. Access to these files and to the files of deceased graduates and former students is also regulated by University policy. For more information see the Princeton University Policy on Access to Archived Student Academic Files.

May I have a copy of Mr. Nash’s 1994 Nobel Prize acceptance speech?

At the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony, His Majesty the King of Sweden hands each Laureate a diploma, a medal, and a document confirming the Prize amount. The Laureates do not give acceptance speeches. The scene in the movie A Beautiful Mind in which Nash thanks his wife Alicia for her continued support during his illness is fictional.

Laureates are each invited to give an hour-long lecture; however, the Nobel committee did not ask John Nash to do so, due to concerns over his mental health.

Last modified: Tuesday, 10-Aug-2004 11:11:33 EDT