Und dann erst kommt der "Ab -ge - sa. ng\' da. /3 der nidlt kurz und nicht zu la. ng, From "Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg", Richard Wagner This final volume is concerned with some of the developments of the subject in the 1960's. In attempting to determine the simple groups, the first step was to settle the conjecture of Burnside that groups of odd order are soluble. The proof that this conjecture was correct is much too long and complicated for presentation in this text, but a number of ideas in the early stages of it led to a local theory of finite groups, so me aspects of which are discussed in Chapter X. Much of this discussion is a con tinuation of the theory of the transfer (see Chapter IV), but we also introduce the generalized Fitting subgroup, which played a basic role in characterization theorems, that is, in descriptions of specific groups in terms of group-theoretical properties alone. One of the earliest and most important such characterizations was given for Zassenhaus groups; this is presented in Chapter XI. Characterizations in terms of the centralizer of an involution are of particular importance in view of the theorem of Brauer and Fowler. In Chapter XII, one such theorem is given, in which the Mathieu group 9J'l1l and PSL(3, 3) are characterized.
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