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A very compact and to-the-point introduction to groups, plane isometries, solvability, group action and Sylow Theorems.

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IISER TVM BS-MS Programme ABSTRACT ALGEBRA Denition 1: A group is a nonempty set G, together with a binary operation, i.e a map : G G G,where we abbreviate the image (g1 , g2 ) as g1 .g2 , such that the following conditions hold: 1. (Associativity): for all g1 , g2 and g3 in G, (g1 .g2 ).g3 = g1 .(g2 .g3 ). 2. (Existence of identity):e G, such that for all g G,e.g = g.e = g 3. (Existence of inverse): for every g G,g G, such that g.g = g g = e. Remarks: Associativity implies that a product g1 .g2 gn can be computed by grouping the elements in any manner. An identity, if it exists, must be unique. For, if e also satises the condition 2 above, then e = e .e = e . So, we call e, the identity of G. Next,the g in 3, if it exists, must be unique. For, suppose g also satises the condition g.g = g.g = e. Then g = e.g = (g .g)g = g (g.g) = g .e = g . Hence we can call g , the inverse of g and agree to denote it as g 1 . We note that a group is cancellative, i.e if g.h = g.k, then we can cancel g and get h = k. For,multiplying by g 1 on the left, we get g 1 .(gh) = g 1 .(g.k) (g 1 g)h = (g 1 g).k e.h = e.k h = k. Finally, in a group the equation g.x = h, can be uniquely solved in x for any given g, h in G and the solution is x = g 1 .h. We now give some examples of groups. The set of all integers Z, the set of all rationals Q, the set of all reals R, or, the set of all complex numbers C are all groups under ordinary addition. Modular Arithmetic. Suppose n is a natural number. If a, b are integers, we say a bmod n, if a b is divisible by n. This is an equivalence relation. The equivalence classes are called residue classes modulo n. There are, in all, n equivalence classes. Suppose A = (a1 , a2 . . . an ) is a full set of representatives of these residue classes,for example, we may take A = (0, 1, . . . , n 1). We dene a binary operation, denoted as + on A as follows: ak +al = am 1

where am is the unique member of A such that ak + al am mod n. It is easily checked that this binary operation makes A into a group. This group Z is denoted as nZ , and called the group of integers mod n. General Observation: Suppose X is any set and G is a group. Assume that X and the underlying set of G have the same cardinality,i.e there is a bijection : X G. Then we may dene a binary operation on X as follows:let elements x, y of X be given. We take x.y to be the element of X given as ( )1 ( x. y). It is easy to check that this makes X into a group. We say the group structure of G is transported to X using the bijection . The above observation implies that given any nite set X we can introduce a binary operation to make it into a group. All we have to do is to Z choose a bijection : X nZ , where n is the cardinality of the set X. Next suppose X is any non empty set. Denote by Aut(X), the set of bijections of X to itself. Then composition of maps dene a binary operation on Aut(X). The identity map of X to itself is the identity for this binary operation. Given any bijection f : X X, there is g : X X such that g f = 1X = f g. This g is clearly a bijection X X and hence plays the role of inverse of f for the binary operation dened above. Hence Aut(X) is a group with composition of maps as the binary operation. If X is a nite set,any bijection of X to itself is called a permutation and in this case Aut(X) is called the permutation group on X, or the symmetric group on X. If X has n elements, we denote the symmetric group on X by the notation Sn . Suppose X = {1, 2, . . . , n} and is a permutation of {1, 2, . . . , n}. We ( ) 1, 2, ,n then denote this permutation as . (1), (2), , (n) If a permutation switches two elements between themselves and leaves the rest unchanged, we call it a transposition. For example the permutation ( ) on 3 symbols 1 2 3 is a transposition.Exercise:Show that every permutation 321 is a product of transpositions. We shall return to the permutation group later. Denition 2: A subgroup of a group G is a subset H, which is stable under the binary operation on G, and such that under this induced binary operation H becomes a group. 2

Remarks: Notations being as above H is a subgroup if and only if 1.His nonempty and 2.for every x, y in H, the element x1 y of G must lie in H. For example the set of even integers 2Z is a subgroup of Z under addition. If H, K are nonempty subsets of the group G, we shall denote by H.K the collection of all elements h.k, where h H and k K. We can dene similarly the product H1 .H2 . . . .Hn , for non empty subsets H1 , H2 , . . . , Hn of G. If {g} is a singleton set, we denote H.{g} as Hg and call it a right coset of H in G. Similarly g.H will be called a left coset of H in G. The set of left cosets of H in G will be denoted as G/H and the set of right cosets of H in G will be denoted as H/G. The map G/H H/G dened by gH Hg 1 is a bijection, and hence the cardinalities of G/H and H/G are the same. The map H gH given by x gx is a bijection,and hence the cardinality of the coset gH is the same as the cardinality of H. Similarly, the cardinality of any right coset Hg is the same as the cardinality of H. Denition 3: If G is a group, the cardinality of the underlying set of G is called the order of G, and denoted as |G|. This could be a natural number or otherwise. If the order is nite, we call G a nite group. Otherwise G will be called an innite group. Suppose H is a subgroup of G. The cardinality of G/H, or what is the same, the cardinality of H/G, is called the index of H in G, and denoted as [G : H]. Z As examples, the order of nZ is n;the order of the symmetric group Sn on n symbols is n! etc. Lagranges Theorem: Suppose G is a nite group and H is a subgroup. Then the order of H divides the order of G. Proof:If g, k are elements of G, dene g k if and only if g 1 k H. This is an equivalence relation on G and the equivalence classes are precisely the left cosets of H in G. So G is the disjoint union of the left cosets of H in G. Hence counting elements we get |G| = |H| [G : H]. So, |H| divides |G|. Denition 4: Suppose G is a group and g is an element of G. If there exists a positive integer m such that g m = e, then there is a smallest positive integer n such that g n = e.We then say that the order of g is n. If for no positive integer m, g m = e, we say the order of g is innity.

Remarks: Let the notations be as above. If the order of g is nite and is equal to n, then the set H = {e, g, g 2 . . . , g n1 } is a subgroup of G. Hence by Lagranges theorem, the order of g divides ( order of the group G. We the ) 1, 2, ,n denote the order of g as o(g). A permutation (1), (2), , (n) which transform cyclically, the elements of a subset of {1, 2, . . . , n} of cardinality k, but leaves the other elements ) ( 1 2 3 4 unchanged, is called a cycle of length k. For example the permutation 3 2 4 1 is a cycle of length 3. It is easily seen that the order of a cycle of length k is k. Moreover one can show that any permutation on n symbols can be uniquely expressed as a product of disjoint cycles. A transposition is a cycle of length 2. The notation (i1 , i2 , . . . , ik ) will be used to denote the cycle which transforms the entries cyclically,leaving other letters xed. Denition 5: Suppose G, H are groups. A homomorphism : G H is a map : G H, such that (g.h) = (g).(h) , for all g, h in G. A homomorphism : G H is called an isomorphism if there exists a homomorphism : H G, such that = 1G and = 1H . This is equivalent to requiring that is a bijective homomorphism. The kernel of the homomorphism is dened as {g G \ (g) = eH }, where eH is the identity of H. Remarks: The kernel is a subgroup of G. Call this subgroup as N . Then N has the special property that for every g G, gN g 1 N . This implies g 1 N g N , for every g G, by replacing g by g 1 in the earlier equation. So N gN g 1 . Putting these together we get gN g 1 = N , for every g G. Such subgroups have a special name given by the next denition: Denition 6: A subgroup N of a group G is called a normal subgroup, if gN g 1 = N for every g G.( It is enough to require that gN g 1 N ). The notation N G will mean that N is a normal subgroup of G. So, the kernel of a homomorphism : G H is a normal subgroup of G. Proposition 1: Suppose N is a normal subgroup of the group G. Then the quotient space (i.e the coset space) G/N can be made into a group in a natural way such that the canonical map : G G/N , given by (g) = gN is a group homomorphism. The kernel of this homomorphism is N . Proof: There is a natural multiplication of left cosets of N in G as follows: If gN, hN are left cosets, then normality of N means hN = N h. Hence 4

(gN ).(hN ) = g(N.h).N = g(hN ).N = gh.N.N = ghN . So we get a binary operation on G/N . The identity for this binary operation is the coset N . The inverse of the coset gN is the coset g 1 N . So, G/N is a group. Next we show that the map is a group homomorphism. For, (g.k) = g.kN , by denition. Also, (g).(k) = gN.kN = gkN . Hence (g.k) = (g).(k), proving that is a homomorphism of groups. Finally, g G belongs to the kernel of , if and only if gN = N , i.e if and only if g N . So, the kernel of is precisely N . The proposition is proved. Remarks: A homomorphism of groups : G H is a monomorphism i kernel is the identity. For, (g) = (k) (k)1 (g) = e (k 1 ).(g) = e (k 1 .g) = e k 1 .g Kernel . So,Kernel is the identity will mean is injective. Conversely suppose is injective. Then if (g) = e, we get g = e, since (e) = e and use injectivity of . First Isomorphism Theorem of Noether: Suppose : G H is a surjective homomorphism of groups. Then kernel is a normal subgroup of G. If we call it N , induces a natural isomorphism : G/N H, such that = , where denotes the canonical homomorphism G G/N . Proof: We know already that N is a normal subgroup. We now dene : G/N H. Take (gN ) = (g). First we check that this is well dened. Suppose gN = kN . This implies k 1 g N = (k 1 g) = e,the identity of H. So, (k)1 .(g) = e = (k) = (g), proving that is well dened. Next we show that is a group homomorphism. For, (gN.kN ) = (g.kN ) = (g.k) = (g).(k) = (gN ).(kN ), proving that is a group homomorphism. Now, since is onto, is onto as well, from its denition. Finally, the kernel of consists of {gN \ (gN ) = e}, i.e, consists of {gN \ (g) = e} = {N }. Hence the kernel of is trivial, proving that is a monomorphism. Since we already know that is an onto map, we conclude that is an isomorphism. Finally (g) = ((g) = (gN ) = (g), this being true for every g G. Hence, = . Theorem is proved. Remarks: Suppose : G H is a homomorphism of groups, with Kernel N . Then the image is a subgroup of H. Let i : Image() H be the natural inclusion map, which is also a homomorphism of groups. Let 5

: G G/N be the canonical homomorphism and let : G/N Image() be the isomorphism given by the above theorem, i.e (gN ) = (g). Then factorizes as: = i . Second Isomorphism Theorem of Noether: Suppose G is a group and N is a normal subgroup of G. Then every subgroup of the quotient group G/N is of the form K/N , where K is a subgroup of G containing N , and any such K/N is a subgroup of G/N . This subgroup K/N is a normal subgroup of G/N , if and only if K is a normal subgroup of G containing N , in which G/N case there is a canonical isomorphism K/N G/K. This will follow from the more general Theorem 1: Suppose : G G is a surjective homomorphism of groups with Kernel N . Let A denote the class of subgroups of G containing N . Let B denote the class of subgroups of G . Then there are maps (dened in the proof below ) : A B, : B A, which are bijections , inverse to each other. Suppose H A and H B, correspond under these bijections. Then H G if and only if H G , in which case induces a canonical isomorphism : G/H G /H . Proof: If H A, dene (H) = (H), the image of H under . Trivially the latter is a subgroup of G and hence belongs to the set B. If H B, dene (H ) = 1 (H ), the inverse image of H under . Clearly this inverse image is a subgroup of G, containing N and hence belongs to the set A. Now, being onto, the composition = 1B . Next, clearly 1 ((H) H. We claim they are actually equal. For, let g 1 ((H)). Then (g) (H), implying that (g) = (h), for some h H. So, h1 g N H g hH g H. Hence the claim. This means = 1A . Hence and are bijections, inverse to each other. Let H and H correspond under these bijections. Suppose H G . Let : G G /H be the canonical quotient homomorphism. Then H is the kernel of the surjective composite homomorphism : G G /H , and so must be normal subgroup of G. The rst isomorphism theorem then implies that the induced homomorphism : G/H G /H is an isomorphism. Next let H G. If g G is given,choose g G such that (g) = g . Then g 1 .H .g = (g)1 H .(g) = (g 1 Hg). Now H being normal in G,we have g 1 Hg H. So, (g 1 Hg) (H) = H g 1 H g H H G . Theorem is proved.

Remarks: The maps and are inclusion preserving. Proof of the second isomorphism theorem: We apply the previous theorem to the canonical surjective homomorphism G G/N , noting that the image under this map of a subgroup K of G, containing N is K/N . Caylays Theorem : Every group G is isomorphic to a subgroup of Aut(X), for a suitable set X. In particular, if G is nite, then it is isomorphic to a subgroup of the symmetric group Sn , for some integer n. Proof: Let Aut(G), denote the set of bijective maps : G G. This is a group under composition of maps. If g G, the translation map G G, given by x g.x is a bijection. Denote this bijection as g . Then we get a map : G Aut(G) given by (g) = g . This is a homomorphism, since (g.h) = g.h = g h = (g) (h). This is injective,since g = identity g = e, the identity of G. Hence, induces an isomorphism of G with the subgroup of Aut(G) given by (G). The theorem is proved. Remarks: In view of Caylays theorem,study of nite groups is reduced to the study of the symmetric group and its subgroups. This is how the symmetric group came to be studied extensively in the earlier stages of the development of the theory. We shall say more on the symmetric group now. Recall an earlier exercise: Every permutation is a product of transpositions. (In computing products in Sn , we follow the convention ofleft rst and right next as followed in Hersteins book). To prove this we rst decompose the permutation as a product of cycles. If (i1 , i2 , . . . , ik ) is a cycle this is equal to the product (i1 , i2 )(i1 , i3 ) . . . (i1 , ik ). Doing this for every constituting cycle of , we get a decomposition as a product of transpositions. Obviously there is no unique representation of as a product of transpositions;we can always introduce a product like (a, b)(a, b) without aecting . More concretely, we have, for example (123) = (12)(13) = (31)(32). However in all representations,the number of transpositions is always odd or, always even. x Proof: Consider the polynomial in n indeterminates x1 , x2 , . . . ,n given by (x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ) = i<j (xi xj ). Dene (x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ) = i<j (x(i) x(j) ). It is easy to see that (x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ) = (x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ).If is 7

a transposition, the numerical factor is 1. So, if is written as a product of m transpositions as well as l transpositions, then the numerical factor will be (1)m or,(1)l respectively. So,(1)m = (1)l , implying m, l have the same parity. Denition 7:Let n 2. A permutation is said to be even or odd, according as whether it is a product of an even number, or, an odd number of transpositions. In the former case we dene sgn() = +1, and in the latter case we dene sgn() = 1. Then the map Sn {1, +1} given by taking to sgn(), is a homomorphism of groups. Here {1, +1} is a group of order 2 under multiplication. This is called the sign homomorphism. Its kernel will be a normal subgroup of Sn , of index 2 and consists of all even permutations. It is called the alternating group on n symbols and is denoted as An .

Groups of symmetries of plane gures Denition 8: An isometry of the plane R2 is a map : R2 R2 such that ||(x) (y)|| = ||x y||,for all x, y in R2 i.e must preserve distances. Remarks: 1. Any isometry is continuous. This is obvious. 2. An isometry maps lines to lines. This is because a line segment joining P, Q can be described by the equation ||X P || + ||X Q|| == ||P Q||. This equation is preserved by an isometry. So,the image will be the line segment joining (P ) and (Q). 3. An isometry preserves angles between lines This is because in a triangle ABC with sides of lengths a, b, c the 2 2 2 cosine of the angleABC is given by c +a b . This relation is preserved 2ac by isometry. 4. An isometry that xes three non collinear points must be the identity. For suppose the isometry xes the three non collinear points A, B, C. Let P be any arbitrary point. Assume,if possible, that (P ) = P . Since 8

xes A, B, C, we get ||(P )A|| = ||P A||, ||(P )B|| = ||P B|| and ||(P ) C|| = ||P C||. So, the perpendicular bisector of the segment joining P, (P ) must pass through all the points A, B, C. This is not possible as the points A, B, C are assumed to be non collinear. Hence (P ) = P , for every P R2 . So is the identity isometry. This property means that if two isometries have the same eect on three non collinear points, then they must coincide. In view of 1. and 2., an isometry preserves congruence relation and preserves shapes of objects. Proposition 2: An isometry that xes the origin must be a linear map R2 R2 . Proof: Since isometries preserves lengths and angles between lines,they take ||gms to ||gms . If P, Q are given points, then P + Q is found by completing the ||gm O, P, Q, P + Q. Since xes the origin, this ||gm is taken to the ||gm O, (P ), (Q), (P + Q). Then from the construction of (P ) + (Q), using the parallelogram law we get (P + Q) = (P ) + (Q) This means (nP ) = n(P ) for every integer n,positive,negative,or zero. If p/q is a rational number,where p, q are integers and q = 0,we get p(P ) = (q(p/q)P ) = q((p/q)P . Hence ((p/q)P ) = p/q ((P )), i.e if a is any rational number, then (aP ) = a(P ).Finally, if x is any real number, choose a sequence of rational numbers xn converging to x. Then by continuity of isometry, we get (xP ) = (limn xn P ) = limn (xn P ) = limn xn (P ) = x(P ). Hence is R- linear Remarks:Any isometry is an injective map. For,let (v) = (w). Then since ||(v) (w)|| = ||v w||, we get ||v w|| = 0. Hence v = w. Soon, we shall see in fact that any isometry is a bijective map of the plane onto itself. Proposition 3: Let be an isometry that xes the origin. Then the linear map given by it is represented by an orthogonal matrix with reference to the standard basis of R2 Proof: Let us denote by v the image of the vector v by . Then since < v, v >= ||v||2 and isometry preserves lengths, we get < v + w, v + w >=< 9

(v + w) , (v + w) >=< v + w , v + w >=< v , v > + < w , w > + 2 < v , w >=< v, v > + < w, w > +2 < v , w >. On the other hand < v + w, v + w >=< v, v > + < w, w > +2 < v, w >. Hence comparing these equations we get, < v , w >=< v, w >,i.e our isometry preserves the standard inner product. So, if{e1 , e2 } is the standard basis for the Euclidean plane, the image vectors {e1 , e2 } will be orthogonal to each other and have unit lengths. This means if A is the corresponding matrix, it satises At A = I. Hence A is an orthogonal matrix. Remarks: Conversely, it is easily shown that if A ia an orthogonal matrix, then the linear transformation given by it is an isometry preserving the origin. Theorem 2: Any isometry of the plane can be uniquely expressed as a composition La T , where La is translation by the vector a and T is an orthogonal transformation. Proof: First observe that any translation by a vector is an isometry. Let (O) = a. Then La takes the origin to itself and is an isometry. Hence it is an orthogonal transformation, by what precedes. Denoting this by T , we get the result. Remarks: The theorem implies in particular that isometries are bijective transformations of the plane onto itself. We denote by O(2) the group of all 2 2 orthogonal matrices. Let A be an orthogonal matrix. Then the condition At A = I implies detA = 1. Let SO2 denote those orthogonal matrices with determinant equal to +1. This will be a (normal) subgroup of O(2) of index 2. It will be called the special orthogonal group and denoted as SO2 . Elements of SO2 correspond to rotations about the origin and elements of its complement in O(2),i.e those with determinant equal to 1, will correspond to reections along lines passing through the origin. So composition of two rotations is a rotation, and composition of two reections is also a rotation. But a composition of a rotation and a reection is a reection. Denition 9: Let S be a non empty subset of the Euclidean plane. By a symmetry of S we mean an isometry that maps S onto itself, i.e (S) = S. Since isometries are bijective maps, a symmetry will map S bijectively onto itself. So, we can talk of the inverse symmetry of a given symmetry. Clearly, 10

compositions of symmetries of S are symmetries of S. The identity map is also a symmetry of S, playing the role of the identity for the compositions of symmetries. Hence we conclude that that the set of symmetries of S form a group under composition. This is called the group of symmetries of S and is denoted as Symm(S). Example-Dihedral group D2n : Let S be a regular n-gon, with vertices on the unit circle. Let the vertices be denoted as {P1 , P2 , , Pn }. The group of symmetries of the regular n-gon is called the Dihedral group of order 2n and denoted as D2n . We shall now describe all the elements of this group. Let denote rotation about the origin through an angle 2 counterclockwise. Let n denote reection on the line l that is the bisector of the angle P2 P1 Pn . Clearly n = id = 2 and we claim that {id, , 2 , n1 , , , n1 } are all distinct. For, clearly {id, , n1 } are all distinct, hence the elements {, , n1 } are also distinct. Next, Suppose if possible i = j . This means ij = . This is not possible, since the left hand side is either the identity, or a rotation, whereas the right hand side is a reection. Hence the 2n elements {id, , 2 , n1 , , , n1 } are distinct. They are all symmetries of S. Next we shall show that these exhaust all the elements od D2n . Let be any symmetry of S. Note that any symmetry of S takes vertices to vertices and preserves adjacency. For the image of the vertex P1 under the action of , there are n possibilities-any one of the vertices can be the image of P1 under . Let (P1 ) = Pk ,for some k. Then the image of the vertex P2 must be adjacent to Pk and hence there are only two possibilities,either Pk1 or, Pk+1 (here the integers k + 1 or, k 1 are read modulo n). Hence there are at most 2n choices for the images of the vertices P1 , P2 . Now any symmetry of S xes the origin, being the unique point equidistant from all the vertices. So there are atmost 2n ways of alloting the images of P1 , P2 , O for any symmetry . Since any symmetry is uniquely determined by the images of three non collinear points, we see that the order of D2n must be atmost 2n. As we have already exhibited 2n distinct elements of D2n , these must constitute all the elements of the group. Hence |D2n | = 2n. Next, we show that = 1 . For, (P1 ) = (P2 ) = Pn and 1 (P1 ) = 1 (P1 ) = Pn . Similarly (Pn ) = (P1 ) = P1 and 1 (Pn ) = 1 (P2 ) = P1 . Hence the symmetries and 1 have the same eect on the points P1 , Pn . They also x the origin. Since P1 , Pn , O are non collinear, we nd that = 1 . So we can describe the Dihedral group D2n by generators and relations as < , ; n = id = 2 , = 1 >. Note also that we have proved that 11

is a reection with line of reection being the perpendicular bisector of the segment P1 Pn . Similarly the symmetries {, , , n1 } are all reections. So there are in all n rotations and n reections constituting all the symmetries of the regular n-gon. Examples: 1. Simplify the expression 2 3 7 in D8 =< , ; 4 = id = 2 , = 1 > and show that it is equal to the identity. 2. Show that S3 D6 = 3. Find the symmetry group of an isocelos triangle which is not an equilateral triangle. 4. Give an example of a subset S of the plane, whose symmetry group is the cyclic group C4 of order 4. in 5. Show that any matrix ( SO2 represents a rotation about the origin. ) Verify that the matrix cos sin represents rotation about the origin sin cos through an angle Theorem 3: The only nite subgroups of the group of all isometries of R2 xing the origin, are the nite cyclic groups Cn and the Dihedral groups D2n , for varying n. CHAPTER 2 GROUP ACTION ON SETS-SYLOW THEOREMS We dene now some important classes of normal subgroups associated with a given group, but rst a Denition 10: Let S be a nonempty subset of a group G. We say S generates G, if every element of G can be expressed as a product x1 .x2 . . . . xn , where, for each i,either xi S,or x1 S. The group G is said to be nitely i generated, if we can nd such a S with nite cardinality. Otherwise G is said to be non nitely generated. In the special case when G is generated by one element, we say the group is cyclic. Cyclic groups can be nite or innite. Any nite cyclic group,having n elements is isomorphic to Z/nZ. Any innite cyclic group is isomorphic to the additive group of integers (Z, +).

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Denition 11: A group is said to be abelian, if the binary operation is commutative,i.e for every g, h in the group, the equation g.h = h.g must hold. Easy examples are the additive groups of integers,rationals,reals or, complex. The group of integers modulo the natural number n, is also abelian. However, the symmetric group Sn is non abelian for all n 3. The Kleins four group V4 given by the four permutations on the symbols 1, 2, 3, 4, namely {e = id, (12)(34), (13)(24), (14)(32)} is also abelian. Note that in an abelian group every subgroup is normal Denition 12: The centre of a group G is dened as the subgroup {g G \ g.h = h.g for all h G}. This is an abelian normal subgroup of G and denoted as Z(G). Denition 13: If G is a group and g, h are elements of G, the element g.h.g 1 .h1 is called the commutator of g and h and denoted as [g, h]. The subgroup generated by the commutators of various pairs of elements of G, is called the commutator subgroup of G and is denoted as [G, G]. Since t.[g, h]t1 = [t.gt1 , t.ht1 ],we see that the commutator subgroup of G is a normal subgroup of G. Clearly the quotient G/[G, G] is abelian, and if N is any normal subgroup of G, such that G/N is abelian, then N [G, G]. For, rst note that if G is any abelian group, then [g, h] = identity for any pair g, h of elements of G. Also note that if : G K is any homomorphism of groups, then [g, h] = [(g), (h)]. So, if K is abelian, then [(g), (h)] must be the identity of K. Now if N G, such that G/N is abelian, apply the above observation by taking K = G/N and the canonical homomorphism G G/N . We see that [g, h] N , for every commutator g, h of G. Hence [G, G] N . Denition 14: An automorphism of a group G is an isomorphism of G onto itself. The set of these group automorphisms form a subgroup of AutG,the set of bijective maps of G to itself. We use the notation Autgr (G), to denote this subgroup. ( In future, whenever we talk of automorphism, when the object is a group, we mean group automorphism, unless otherwise stated.) Denition 15:Let G be a group and g any element in it. The map x g.x.g 1 gives an automorphism of the group, called the inner automorphism by g and denoted as intg . An automorphism which is not an inner automorphism, is called an outer automorphism. We use the notation Int(G) to 13

denote the set of inner automorphisms of G. This forms a normal subgroup of Autgr (G). In fact intg inth = intg.h and int1 = intg1 , and for any g Autgr (G),one can verify intg 1 = int(g) . Denition 16: Let S be any subgroup of a group G. By normalizer of S in G, one means the subset {g G \ g.S.g 1 = S}. This is denoted as NG (S). Note that this is a subgroup of G,and is in fact NG (S) is the largest subgroup of G containing S as a normal subgroup. So, a subgroup N of G is normal,if and only if its normalizer in G is G. Denition 17: Let S be a non empty subset of the group G. The Centralizer of S in G is the set {g G\g.x = x.g, for every x S}. It is a subgroup denoted as ZG (S). If S happens to be the whole G, then the centralizer of G in G is the center of G. Denition 18: Two subgroups H and K of a group G are said to be conjugate in G, if g.Hg 1 = K, for some g G. Two elements g, h of G are said to be conjugate to each other, if h = x.gx1 for some x G. This is an equivalence relation in the underlying set of G. The equivalence classes are called conjugacy classes. Note that the singleton set consisting of any central element constitutes a conjugacy class. Example: The conjugacy classes of S3 are {e = id}, {(12), (13), (2, 3)} and {(123), (132)}. Denition 19: Suppose p is a prime number. A nite group G is said to be a p-group, if its order is a power of p. Denition 20: Let the prime p divide the order of the nite group G. Let pn be the maximum power of p dividing order of G. A subgroup of G, of order pn is called a p-sylow subgroup. It is an important theorem in group theory that Sylow subgroups do exist for every prime dividing the order of the group. We shall prove this and other Sylow theorems by using the idea of group operating on sets. In analogy with the notation for the order of a group, we shall denote hereafter, the cardinality of a set X by the notation |X|.

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Denition 21: A group G is said to operate on a nonempty set S, if there is given a map : G S S, where the image (g, x) is abbreviated as g.x, such that the following hold: 1. (g1 .g2 ).x = g1 .(g2 .x), for all g1 , g2 in G and all x in S. 2. e.x = x for all x S, where e is the identity of G. Remarks: For any xed g G, the map S S, taking x g.x is bijective.This is because,it has the inverse map,y g 1 y. This is indeed the inverse map since g 1 (g.x) = (g 1 g)x = e.x = x. We denote this bijection of S onto itself as (g). So we get a map : G Aut(S). Here we mean by Aut(S), the set of all bijective maps of S S made into a group by composition of bijections. Now (gh)(x) = (gh).x = g.(h.x) = (g)(h.x) = (g)((h)(x)) = ((g) (h))(x). Hence (gh) = (g) (h). This means is a homomorphism of groups G Aut(S). Conversely, given any homomorphism of groups : G Aut(S), we can dene a G-action on S as follows:dene g.x = (g)(x). This is indeed a group action of G on S and this gives back the homomorphism , by the preceding construction. Hence, giving a G-action on S is equivalent to giving a homomorphism of groups G Aut(S). Example 1: Let G be a group and H any subgroup. Let S = G/H. Then G operates on S by left translations,i.e the map G G/H G/H, takes (g, kH) to g.kH. Example 2: Let G be a group and N any normal subgroup, for example we may take N = G. Then the map G N N taking (g, h) to intg (h) ( Recall intg (h) = ghg 1 ), gives an action of G on N . This action is called action via inner automorphisms. Example 3: Let V be a nite dimensional complex vector space. Denote by GL(V ), the group of C-linear automorphisms of V . Then GL(V ) acts on V as follows: if T GL(V ) and v V are given, take (T, v) to T (v). We say the group G acts on V by linear automorphisms. Denition 22: Let the group G act on the set S. Given x S, the orbit of x under the action of G is dened to be the set {g.x \ g G}. This is a subset of S and is denoted as O(x). The stabilizer of x is the subgroup of G dened by {g G \ g.x = x}. ( That this is a subgroup is easily checked ). 15

It is denoted as Gx . Remarks: We have seen that giving an action of G on S is equivalent to giving a homomorphism of groups: G Aut(S). Moreover the action of G on S gives rise to an equivalence relation on S as follows: if x, y are given elements of S,dene x y, if there is some g G, such that g.x = y. That this is an equivalence relation is veried by using the denition of group action. The equivalence classes are precisely the orbits of elements of S under the action of G. Proposition 4:Let the group G act on the set S. Let x S be given. Let Gx be the stabilizer of x. Then the map : G/Gx O(x), given by gGx g.x is well dened and is a bijection. Proof: Suppose gGx = hGx . This means g = h.k, for some k Gx . So g.x = (h.k).x = h.(k.x) = h.x,since k Gx k.x = x. Hence we get g.x = h.x. So the map is well dened. Since every member of O(x) is of the form g.x, for some g G, we see that the map is onto. Suppose gGx , hGx map into the same element of O(x) by . This means g.x = h.x (h1 .g)x = x h1 .g Gx g.Gx = h.Gx . Hence is injective,and by what precedes, is bijective. Proposition 5: Let the group G operate on the set S. Then |S| = [G : Gx ] where in x , x runs through a complete set of representatives of various orbits. (This is called the orbit-stabilizer equation ) Proof: The orbits are equivalence classes under the equivalence relation x y g.x = y,for some g G. Since S is the disjoint union of its equivalence classes, the result follows by counting and applying the previous proposition 4. Remarks: Suppose the group G operates on itself through inner automorphisms. Then the orbits are just the conjugacy classes. The stabilizer Gx of an element x is just ZG (x). Note that singleton orbits are given by central elements. Then the orbit-stabilizer equation of the previous proposition yields,

x

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Class Equation: |G| = |Z(G)| + x [G : ZG (x)], where in x , the x runs through a complete set of representatives of conjugacy classes, not reduced to singleton sets . This can be generalized for any action of G on the non empty set S as follows: Dene an element x S to be a xed point for G-action,if {g.x = x \ for every g G}. Denote the set of xed points of S under the G-action as S G . Then the following holds: General Class Equation : |S| = |S G | + x [G : Gx ],where the sum is extended over a complete set of representatives of orbits not reduced to singleton sets. Theorem 4: Let G be a p-group. Then the centre of G is non trivial. Proof: We use the class equation |G| = |Z(G)| + x [G : ZG (x)]. If ZG (x) = G, i.e if x is not a central element, then p|[G : ZG (x)]. Since p||G|, the class equation implies, p||Z(G)|. Note that Z(G) is non empty, as the identity is a central element. Then by what precedes, Z(G) must have atleast 2 elements, implying that the centre of G is nontrivial. Denition 23:Let G be a nite group of order n and p is a prime dividing the order n. Let pm be the highest power of p dividing n. Recall that any subgroup of order pm is dened to be a p-Sylow subgroup of G. Sylow Theorems Let G be a nite group of order n and p be a prime dividing n. Write n = pm .q, where p does not divide q. Then 1. p- Sylow subgroups exist. 2. The number of p- Sylow subgroups 1 mod(p) 3. Any two p- Sylow subgroups are conjugate 4. If H is any p- subgroup of G, then H is contained in a p- Sylow subgroup. Proof: Let S denote the collection of subsets of G of cardinality pm . Make G operate on S as follows:G S S takes (g, X) to g.X. Let X1 , X2 . . . , Xr 17

be a full set of representatives of the orbits of S under this action of G. Let Gi denote the stabilizer of Xi . Then the orbit-stabilizer equation gives |S| = r [G : Gi ]. Claim: |Gi | pm for every i = 1, 2 . . . , r. For, if x Xi i is any element, kept xed, and g Gi is arbitrary, then g.x Xi . This is because Gi stabilizes Xi . Next, clearly the map Gi Xi taking g Gi to g.x Xi is injective. So,|Gi | Xi . Since |Xi | = pm , the claim is veried. If for some 1 i r,it holds that |Gi | < pm ,then we show that [G : Gi ] is divisible by p. This is because of the equation |Gi |[G : Gi ] = pm q. On the other hand, if |Gi | = pm , then Gi is a p-Sylow subgroup. So we can write the Orbit-stabilizer equation as a congruence |S| [G : Gi ](mod p).................................................................()

|Gi |=pm

Now assume that for some i, |Gi | = pm . Then in the notations of what precedes,we get Gi x Xi . Considering cardinalities we get Gi x = Xi So,x(x1 Gi x) = Xi .i.e if K denotes the group x1 Gi x, then Xi = xK. Note that |K| = |Gi |, i.e K is a p-Sylow subgroup. Let g1 , g2 , . . . , gq be a full set of representatives of the left cosets space G/Gi . Then the orbit O(Xi ) is the set g1 Xi , g2 Xi . . . gq Xi . Now gj Xi = gj xK. Clearly the left cosets g1 xK, g2 xK, . . . gq xK of K in G are distinct; for, suppose that gr xK = gs xK. Since xK = Gi x, we get gr Gi x = gs Gi x, i.e gr Gi = gs Gi . So we get r = s. Since [G : K] = q, the cosets g1 xK, g2 xK, . . . gq xK of K in G constitute all the left cosets of K in G. i.e the orbit O(Xi ) is the left coset space G/K, for a p-Sylow subgroup K. Conversely, if H is any p-Sylow subgroup,then the coset space G/H constitute a full orbit, represented by H. Its stabilizer is H itself. So, H can be one of the Gi in the sum (*) above. Also, if H1 , H2 are distinct p- Sylow subgroups, then the orbits O(H1 ) and O(H2 ) are disjoint,i.e G/H1 and G/H2 are disjoint. For, being orbits, if they are not disjoint, they have to be identical. Now H1 is a member of the orbit G/H1 , and,if it were to be a member of the orbit G/H2 ,it must be H2 , as this is the only member of G/H2 containing the identity. But this will be a contradiction as H1 = H2 , proving that the orbits G/H1 and G/H2 are disjoint. Summing up we see that if d denotes the number of distinct p-Sylow subgroups, then the congruence (*) implies |S| dq(modp)....................................................................................() ( ) . Now |S| being equal to the binomial coecient pn , the numbers |S|, q, p m depend only on n, the order of the group G, and not on the group itself. 18

We specialize G to be the cyclic group Z/nZ. This has only one p-Sylow subgroup, i.e d = 1 in this(case. So the preceding congruence becomes ) |S| q(modp). This means pn q(modp), a congruence dependent only m on the integer n. Now let G be an arbitrary group of order n. Substituting |S| q(modp) in the congruence (**), we get q dq(modp). Noting that p does not divide q, we see that d 1(modp). This implies that d is never zero,i.e p-Sylow subgroups exist and their number is 1 (modp). This proves 1) and 2) of the theorem. Now we prove 3) and 4). Let H be a p-Sylow subgroup and H any psubgroup. Let H operate on G/H through left translations. Since [G : H] is not divisible by p,there must be at least one xed point for the action of H on G/H. This because of the generalized class equation : [G : H] = is |xed point set| + [H : Hi ], where the sum is over those orbits not reducing to singleton sets and Hi stand for stabilizers of representatives of these orbits. Since H is a p-group, and [G : H] is coprime to p, the xed point set cannot be empty. Let the coset gH be a xed point for the action of H on G/H. So we get H gH = gH = H g gH = H gHg 1 . Now gHg 1 is a p-Sylow subgroup. So we conclude that the p-group H is contained in a p-Sylow subgroup,namely gHg 1 , proving 4) of the theorem. If H is also a p-Sylow subgroup, then by what precedes,H = gHg 1 . So any two p-sylow subgroups are conjugate, proving 3) of the theorem. Proof of Sylow Theorem is complete. Corollary- Cauchys Theorem: If the order of the nite group G is divisible by the prime p, then there exists in G, an element of order p. Proof: Let H be a p-Sylow subgroup of G. Let g H be any element,not equal to the identity. Its order being a divisor of the order of H, it must be pk , for some k > 0. If k = 1, that will mean g has order p, and we are k1 through. Suppose k 2. Let x = g p .Then x will have order p. Proposition 6: Let G be a nite group and p, a prime dividing the order of G. Let P be a p-Sylow subgroup of G. Suppose H is any subgroup of G, whose order is also divisible by p. Then for some g G, gP g 1 H will be a p- Sylow subgroup of H. Proof: Make H operate on G/P by left translations. Since [G : P ] is not 19

divisible by p, there will be an orbit O(gP ) whose cardinality is not divisible by p. The stabilizer of gP is the subgroup H gP g 1 . Since the index of this subgroup in H is equal to the cardinality of the orbit O(gP ), this index will be coprime to p. So, |H gP g 1 | must be divisible by p.Now, notice that H gP g 1 gP g 1 , and the latter is a p-group. Hence H gP g 1 will be a p- subgroup of H, and in fact it will be a p-Sylow subgroup of H since its index in H is coprime to p. Remarks: Suppose N G. Let p be a prime dividing the order of G.Let P be a p-Sylow subgroup of G. Suppose p divides |N |. Then N P will be a p-Sylow subgroup of N . On the other hand if p divides |G/N |,then P N/N will be a p-Sylow subgroup of G/N . Conversely, with the same divisibility conditions by p, any p-Sylow subgroup of N will be of the form N P for some p-Sylow subgroup P of G. Also, any p- Sylow subgroup of G/N will be of the form P N/N for some p-Sylow subgroup P of G. Proof: Suppose p divides |N |. Then by the preceding proposition N gP g 1 will be a p-Sylow subgroup of N for some g G. Since gN g 1 = N , we get N gP g 1 = g(N P )g 1 . So, g(N P )g 1 will be a p-Sylow subgroup of N . Now |N P | = |g(N P )g 1 |. Hence, N P will be a p-Sylow subgroup of N . Next assume that p divides |G/N |. This ensures that P N , as otherwise P N would mean [G : N ] would divide [G : P ], by the tower formula for degrees applied to the tower G N P . This is not possible as [G : P ] is coprime to p, whereas we have assumed that p divides |G/N |. So P N/N will be a non trivial subgroup of G/N . Now the canonical homomorphism P P N/N ,taking x P to the coset xN of P N/N is onto. This is because any coset in P N/N will be of the form xuN , for some x P and some u N . Clearly this means xuN = xN .i.e the above homomorphism is onto. Its kernel is the subgroup P N . Hence by the rst isomorphism theorem we get P/P N P N/N . We have shown that = P N/N is nontrivial and the preceding isomorphism shows that it is a p-group ( [P : P N ] is a power of p, the index being a divisor of |P | ). Next observe that [G : P N ] is coprime to p, as it divides [G : P ] in view of the tower formula applied to the tower G P N P . Now apply the tower formula for indices to the tower G P N N . We get [G : N ] = [G : P N ][P N : N ].i.e [G:N ] = [G : P N ]. This means,in view of what we have proved just now that [P N :N ] the index [G/N : P N/N ] which is the same as 20

|G/N | |P N/N |

[G:N ] [P N :N ]

= [G : P N ],

is coprime to p. Hence P N/N is a p-Sylow subgroup of G/N . For the converse part,let K be a p-Sylow subgroup of N . Since K is a p-group,it must be contained in a p-Sylow subgroup, say P of G. By the rst part,N P will be a p-Sylow subgroup of N . So, both K and N P are p-Sylow subgroups of N . Since K N P , there must be equality,i.e K = N P . Next consider any subgroup H/N of G/N (here H is a subgroup of G containing N ). Suppose this is a p-Sylow subgroup of G/N . By the |G/N tower formula for degrees, we get |H/N || = [G : H] and the former is not divisible by p, since H/N is p-Sylow in G/N . Hence p must not divide [G : H]. So, if pm is the maximum power of p dividing |G|, we see that pm must divide |H|. So any p-Sylow subgroup of H will be a p-Sylow subgroup of G. Let P be any p-Sylow subgroup of H. Since this is also p- Sylow in G, by the rst part of the proof we get P N/N is p- Sylow in G/N . Since P N/N H/N , and the latter is given to be a p-Sylow subgroup of G/N , there must be equality. Hence we get P N/N = H/N . The proof is complete. Remarks: Let G be a nite group and p be a prime dividing the order of G. Let P be a p-Sylow subgroup. Let NG (P ) denote the normalizer of P in G. Then [G : NG (P )] 1 mod (p). Proof: Let S be the set of conjugates of P . Let G act on S through conjugation,i.e (g, xP x1 ) gxP x1 g 1 = (gx)P (gx)1 . There is only one orbit. The stabilizer of P is {g G \ gP g 1 = P } which is NG (P ). Hence, from the relation of orbit and stabilizer we get [G : NG (P )] = |S| = number of conjugates of P = number of p- Sylow subgroups of G 1 mod p. Remarks : Let d denote the number of p-Sylow subgroups of the group G. Then d divides |G| and d 1 mod(p). This is because [G : NG (P )] divides |G|, implying that d divides |G|, proving the rst part; the other part is because of sylow theorems. Proposition 7: Let G be a group of order pn , where p is a prime. Then for every divisor d of |G|, there is a normal subgroup of order d. Proof: We know that the centre Z(G) is non trivial and it is a p-group. Using Cauchys theorem we can nd a central element g of order p. The

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subgroup N generated by it must be a normal subgroup of G of order p. Then G/N will be a p-group of order pn1 . Inductively, we may assume that for every 0 k n 1,there is a normal subgroup of order pk in G/N . Such a subgroup will be H/N , where N H G. Clearly |H| = pk+1 .i.e there are normal subgroups of G of order pl for every 1 l n. This completes the proof. CHAPTER 3 JORDAN-HOLDER THEOREM- SOLVABLE GROUPS Denition 24: A group G is said to be simple if it is not the identity, and such that its only normal subgroups are the identity subgroup and the whole group. Examples: Any group of prime order is simple, by Lagranges theorem. The alternating group An , for n 5 is non abelian and simple. Denition 25: A Jordan-Holder series for G is a nite descending sequence of subgroups, each normal in the preceding one, G = G0 G1 G2 , Gr = (e) such that the successive quotient groups Gi /Gi+1 are all simple for 0 i r 1. Jordan-Holder Theorem: Suppose G = G0 G1 G2 , Gr = (e) and G = H0 H1 H2 Hs = (e) are two Jordan Holder series for G. Then r = s and there is a bijection : {G0 /G1 , G1 /G2 , , Gr1 /Gr } {H0 /H1 , H1 /H2 , , Hs1 /Hs } such that the corresponding quotients are isoorphic. The next lemma was already seen in pages 19-20, but we repeat it for the sake of completeness.

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Lemma 1: Suppose G is a group and N, K are subgroups, such that N G. Then KN is a subgroup,N KN and there is an isomorphism of groups KN/N K/K N . = Proof: Only the last part may require proof. Consider the natural homomorphism of groups : K KN/N . This is clearly onto. Its kernel is K N . Then apply the rst isomorphism theorem to conclude the proof. Lemma 2: Every nite group G = (e), possesses a Jordan-Holder series. Proof: If G is simple, then G (e) is a Jordan-Holder series. Suppose G is not simple. Then there are normal subgroups N = G, (e). Using the niteness of the order of G, we may choose N , to be a maximal proper normal subgroup of G. Then G/N will be a simple group. By induction on the order of G, we may assume that N possesses a Jordan-Holder series N N1 N2 , Nr = (e). Then,obviously G N N1 , N2 , Nr = (e) will be a Jordan-Holder series for G. Proof of Jordan-Holder Theorem: Suppose G = G0 G1 G2 , Gr = (e)..........................(1) and G = H0 H1 H2 Hs = (e)............................(2) are two Jordan Holder series for G. We use induction on the order of G, the theorem being trivially true for simple groups. We say two Jordan- Holder series for G are equivalent, if they satisfy the conclusion of the Jordan-Holder theorem.This is clearly an equivalence relation on the set of Jordan-Holder series for G. If in the above J-H series G1 = H1 , then apply induction to conclude that G1 G2 , Gr = (e) and H1 H2 Hs = (e) are equivalent. Then the original J-H series are equivalent since G1 = H1 . Next assume that G1 = H1 . Then since H1 is maximal normal in G, and H1 G1 being obviously normal in G, we get G = H1 G1 . Then by lemma1 we get isomorphisms G/G1 H1 /H1 G1 ....................................(3) = 23

and

. Using lemma2,choose a J-H series for H1 G1 , say H1 G1 L3 L4 Lt = (e) . Then we have four J-H series for G: G = G0 G1 G2 , Gr = (e)......................................(5) G = H0 H1 H2 Hs = (e)......................................(6) G G1 G1 H1 L3 Lt = (e)...............................(7) G H1 H1 G1 L3 Lt = (e)................................(8) Now the isomorphisms (3) and (4) imply that the J-H series (7) and (8) are equivalent. Induction applied to the groups G1 and H1 imply that the J-H series (5) is equivalent to the J-H series (7) and that the J-H series (6) is equivalent to the J-H series (8). Hence (5) and (6) are equivalent,proving the theorem.

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Direct Products in Groups Let G1 , G2 be groups. Let G = G1 G2 be the cartesian product of G1 and G2 as sets. We make G into a group by dening the binary operation as: (g1 , g2 )(h1 , h2 ) = (g1 h1 , g2 h2 ). The identity for this operation is (e1 , e2 ), where e1 and e2 are the identities of G1 and G2 respectively. The 1 1 inverse of (g1 , g2 ) will be (g1 , g2 ). Clearly the binary operation is also associative. Hence G is a group. This is called the direct product of G1 and G2 and is denoted as G1 G2 . Note that G1 (e2 ) and (e1 ) G2 are normal subgroups of G1 G2 and their intersection is the identity of G1 G2 . This of course means that any element of G1 (e2 ) commutes with every element of (e1 ) G2 . Moreover, every element of G1 G2 can be uniquely written as a product of an element of G1 (e2 ) and an element of (e1 ) G2 . In particular, denoting G1 = G1 e2 and G2 = e1 G2 , we get G = G1 G2 . Note also that |G1 G2 | = |G1 ||G2 |. We say in the situation above that G1 G2 is the (external) direct product of G1 and G2 as against the internal direct product dened below. We now try to analyze a given group G having two subgroups G1 , G2 such that 1) both G1 and G2 are normal subgroups 2) G1 G2 = (e) and nally, 3) G = G1 .G2 . ( in the case of abelian groups, the condition G = G1 .G2 will be written as G = G1 + G2 ). We then say that G is the internal direct product of its subgroups G1 and G2 . These conditions mean that every element of g G has a unique expression g = g1 g2 , where g1 G1 and g2 G2 .. Also we see that every element of G1 commutes with every element of G2 . So, setting (g) = (g1 , g2 ), we obtain a well dened map : G G1 G2 . This is easily checked to be an isomorphism of groups. i.e, G is isomorphic to the (external) direct product of the groups G1 and G2 . By abuse of notation we write G = G1 G2 . In future whenever we say a group G is the direct product G1 G2 , the context will make it clear whether we are talking of an external direct product or an internal direct product. In the case of abelian groups, instead of saying direct product , we say direct sum and write G1 G2 . Example: Z/6Z Z/2Z Z/3Z. = This is because G = Z/6Z contains the subgroups G1 = 3Z/6Z and G2 = 25

2Z/6Z of orders 2 and 3 respectively, which are coprime integers. Hence G1 G2 = (0). Since we are dealing with abelian groups, these are normal subgroups of G. Next 2Z + 3Z = Z. Hence G = G1 + G2 implying that G = G1 G2 . Also G1 Z/2Z and G2 Z/3Z. So, nally we get Z/6Z = = = Z/2Z Z/3Z. Remarks: The arguements above gives the more general: Suppose m, n are relatively prime integers. Then Z/mnZ Z/mZ Z/nZ = . Example: Show that the Kleins four group V4 C2 C2 , where C2 stands = for a cyclic group of order 2. For, V4 = {e, (12)(34), (13)(24), (14)(23)}. Let H = {e, (12)(34)} and K = {e, (13)(24)}. These are cyclic groups of orders 2 and hence isomorphic to C2 . These are normal subgroups of V4 , since the group is abelian. Also, clearly H K = e. Finally, since (12)(34)(13)(24) = (14)(23), we get G = HK. Hence V4 = H K = V4 C2 C2 = The General case: Suppose G1 , G2 , , Gn are groups. Then just as we dened the direct product of two groups we can make the cartesian product G = G1 G2 Gn into a group by dening (g1 , g2 , , gn )(h1 , h2 , , hn ) = (g1 h1 , g2 h2 , , gn hn ). We then get a group, whose identity is (e1 , e2 , , en ) 1 2 1 and the inverse of (g1 , g2 , , gn ) being (g1 , g2 , , gn ). Then we say G1 G2 Gn is the direct product of the groups G1 , G2 , , Gn . If the groups are abelian we sometimes say direct sum instead of direct product and use the notation G1 G2 , Gn to denote this direct sum. We can show just as in the case of two groups, that Gi = e1 e2 ei1 Gi ei+1 ei+2 en are normal subgroups in the direct product,such that, for every 1 i G1 G2 Gi1 Gi+1 Gn Gi = identity of G . Also we n, have that G = n Gi . This is the external situation. i=1 Now suppose that G is a group having normal subgroups Gi for 1 i n, such that G = n Gi and that for every i, G1 G2 Gi1 Gi+1 Gn Gi = i=1 identity of G. These conditions mean that every element of g G can be uniquely represented as g = g1 g2 gn , where each gi Gi . Moreover elements Gi commute with elements of Gj for i = j. So the map G G1 G2 Gn taking g (g1 , g2 , , gn ) gives a bijection and is in fact 26

an isomorphism of groups. This is the internal situation. We say G is the (internal) direct product of the Gi s. Fundamental Theorem of Abelian Groups : Every nite abelian group is a direct product of cyclic groups of prime power orders. The sequence of orders of these cyclic groups is uniquely determined by the group up to permutation. (This will be proved later in the context of modules over a principal ideal ring ) Solvable groups Denition 26: A group G is said to be solvable if there exists a composition series G = G0 G1 G2 Gn = (e)................................................() such that the successive quotients Gi /Gi+1 are all abelian for 0 i n 1. Such a composition series will be called a solvable series for G. Examples : Any abelian group is solvable trivially. The group S3 and S4 are also solvable, since there are composition series: S3 {e, (123), (132)} (e) S4 A4 V4 (e) with successive quotients being abelian groups in each case. The group Sn , for n 5 is,however, not solvable.( This is proved in the end of this chapter ). Denition 27: For a group G, we let G(0) = G and G(1) = [G, G], the commutator subgroup of G and for all k 2 ,dene G(k) inductively as the commutator subgroup of G(k1) ,i.e dene G(k) = [G(k1) , G(k1) ]. These groups G(k) are called higher commutator subgroups of G. Proposition 8: The group G is solvable if and only if G(k) = id for some k . Proof: Assume G to be solvable. Let (*) be a solvable series for G. Since G0 /G1 is abelian, we get G(1) G1 . Assume inductively that G(k) Gk . Since Gk /Gk+1 is abelian, [Gk , Gk ] Gk+1 . Now G(k+1) = [G(k) , G(k) ] [Gk , Gk ] Gk+1 . Hence, inductively, G(j) Gj for every j . Since Gn = id, we get G(n) = id. Now suppose G(m) = id for some m . Since G(i+1) = [G(i) , G(i) ], we get G(i+1) G(i) , and the quotient G(i) /G(i+1) is abelian for every i. This means G = G(0) G(1) G(2) G(m) = id 27

will be a solvable series for G. Hence G is solvable. Theorem 5: Let G be a group and H,a subgroup. If G is solvable,then H is also solvable. If ,in addition, H G, then G will be solvable, if and only if both H and G/H are solvable. Proof: Suppose G is solvable, so that G(m) = id for some m . Clearly H (k) G(k) for every k. So, in particular H (m) = id, i.e H is solvable by the proposition above. Next, suppose that H is normal in G. Then by the properties of commutatator subgroup applied to the natural onto homomorphism G G/H, we get (G/H)(k) = G(k) H/H. So, if G(k) = id for some k , then for the same k, we get (G/H)(k) = id, implying that G/H is solvable. Finally suppose that H G and that both H and G/H are solvable. Then H (l) = id and (G/H)(k) = id, for certain l and k. Since (G/H)(k) = G(k) H/H, we get from what precedes, that G(k) H. Hence G(k+l) H (l) = id. This means G(k+l) = id, meaning that G is solvable. Proposition 9: If a group G is solvable and simple, then it must be of prime order. Proof: We know that G(1) , the commutator subgroup of G is a normal subgroup of G. Since G is simple, we must have, either that G(1) = id,or that G(1) = G. Claim: the case G(1) = G cannot happen. For, since G(k) = [G(k1) , G(k1) ],inductively we would get G(k) = G for every k. This would mean G is not solvable, contrary to our assumption. Hence we must have G(1) = id, i.e G is abelian. Since every subgroup of an abelian group is normal, and G is assumed to be simple,any element= id will generate G, i.e G is cyclic. It cannot be Z,as the latter has proper subgroups. So the only possibility is that G is a nite group of prime order. Proposition 10: A nite group G is solvable if and only if it has a composition series G = G0 G1 G2 Gn = (e)................................................() such that the successive quotients Gi /Gi+1 are all of prime orders. Proof: The if part follows from the denition of solvability. We prove the

28

only if part. Since G is nite ,it has a Jordan-Holder series,say G = G0 G1 G2 Gn = (e)................................................() Since G is solvable, the subgroup Gi is solvable, by theorem above. Also Gi+1 Gi . Hence by the same theorem, Gi /Gi+1 must be solvable. Since we are dealing with a Jordan- Holder series now, the groups Gi /Gi+1 are all simple. Then by the preceding proposition, Gi /Gi+1 , must be of prime order for every i. Proposition 11: Every p-group G, where p is a prime, is solvable. Proof: One knows that the centre Z(G) = id. This being abelian,must be solvable. Next, the group G/Z(G) is a p group of order strictly less than that of G. So,inductively we may assume that G/Z(G) is solvable. Then appealing to our theorem above we conclude that G must be solvable. Theorem 6: Sn is not solvable for n 5. Lemma 1: Let N G. Then the commutator subgroup [N, N ] is a normal subgroup of G Proof: This follows from the property t[x, y]t1 = [txt1 , tyt1 ], where x, y N and t G. The symbol [x, y] stands for the commutator of x and y. Lemma 2: Let G = Sn . If n 5, then G(k) contains all three cycles. Proof: Suppose N G and that N contains all three cycles. Claim: N (1) , the commutator subgroup of N will contain all three cycles too. Since n 5,we choose 3-cycles (123), (145) in N . Their commutator is (123)1 (145)1 (123)(145) = (321)(541)(123)(145) = (142) So (142) N (1) . Let (i1 i2 i3 ) be any arbitrary 3cycle. Let be a permutation such that (1) = i1 , (4) = i2 , (2) = i3 . Then 1 (142) = (i1 i2 i3 ). Since N (1) G, by Lemma 1, we get (i1 i2 i3 ) N (1) . Since (i1 i2 i3 ) is an arbitrary 3-cycle, the claim follows. We apply this to the case N = G. Then G(1) will contain all three cycles. Next take N = G(1) . We nd G(2) will contain all 29

three cycles. Proceeding like this we conclude that G(k) will contain all three cycles for every k. Lemma 2 is proved. Proof of Theorem: Let G = Sn . By Lemma 2, for every k, G(k) will contain all three cycles. So, G(k) is never the identity subgroup. Hence G i.e Sn is not solvable if n 5, proving the Theorem. Remarks: The examples after Denition 26, show that S3 and S4 are solvable. Trivially S2 and S1 are solvable too. It can be proved that An is simple for n 5 and solvable in the other cases.

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