**Structuralism in mathematics.** It may have started in linguistics, but it reached mathematics next, promoted largely through Weil and Bourbaki, category theory, and then the grand vision of Grothendieck. Structuralism is not so much a single mathematical idea as a way of thinking about properties and definitions, what mathematical objects are, and how we should study them. The ideas expanded out from mathematics swiftly, and in the course of 20th century intellectual development, it is hard to find an idea as pervasive and influential as the structuralist approach.

(There is a book by Amir Aczel on Bourbaki that some of the story. I found the book to be unfortunately rather poorly written, but informative nonetheless.)

Structuralism is literally everywhere. It contains the idea the objects are characterised by their relationships relative to all other objects, rather than having an inherent identity of their own. For example, one sees an element of this in passing from old notions of groups and collections of transformations of something to the more abstract notion of a set equipped with the structure of a group multiplication law. Through Levi-Strauss, structuralism was introduced into anthropology. It created a large school of thought in history, sociology, political science, and so on.

Up above, I see that the Google PageRank algorithm was mentioned. One can view this as an example of structuralism in action - the rank of a website is computed by the algorithm as a certain function of its relationship to all other websites rather than as a function of the content of the site itself.

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