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Joshua Cruz : An Introduction to the Riemann-Hilbert Correspondence

Early in the history of complex analysis, it was realized that there are no continuous versions of the square root or the logarithm on the entire complex plane; instead, analysts invented multi-valued functions to deal with these strange behaviors. The "graphs" of these multi-valued functions can get very interesting, and can be interpreted topologically. In general, the space of solutions to a "nice" system of holomorphic ordinary differential equations on the non-zero complex numbers will not be made up of functions, but of multi-functions. Studying these spaces of solutions have led to several ideas in algebraic topology, especially monodromy, and the relationship between systems of ODE and possible monodromies is called the Riemann-Hilbert Correspondence.

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