Members of congress are elected to the US House of Representatives by tallying who gets the most votes in each district—these are shapes on the map that are designed to cut up each state into chunks with equal population.

Gerrymanding is the abuse of the districting pen to promote unfair outcomes, and it’s widely associated with oddly shaped districts.

  • What’s the link between shapes and fairness?
  • How can geometry interact with law, politics, and civil rights?

Professor Moon Duchin and Bowdoin Professor Michael Franz on Monday night presented the Cecil T. and Marion C. Holmes Mathematics Lecture.

Duchin is an associate professor in the department of mathematics at Tufts University. Her mathematical research concerns geometric topology and geometric group theory, with tools in dynamics.

The event was sponsored by the Departments of Mathematics and Government and Legal Studies, the Holmes Fund and the Donovan Fund.