Mathematics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people studying math at any level and professionals in related fields. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

trying to compute the integral $\int_\gamma \frac{e^{z}}{z(z-3)} dz $, where $\gamma:[0,2\pi]\to\mathbb{C}, \gamma(\theta)=2e^{i\theta} $ but not sure where to begin. I know, from Cauchy's formula, that $ f(b) = \frac{1}{2{\pi}i} \int_\gamma \frac{f(a)}{a-b}da $, so I attempted to proceed by letting $ f(a) = e^{a} $ and realizing the denominator consists of product terms $ z $ and $z-3$, both of the form $a-b$, with $a=z$ and $b=0$ and $b=3$ in each term. However, I'm not sure how to deal with the two product terms, nor am I sure in my $ f(a) = e^{a} $ substitution. Any help is greatly appreciated!

share|cite|improve this question
up vote 0 down vote accepted

Use $f(z) = \frac{e^z}{z-3}$, and $b = 0$. Then you have the right integrand, and can use the theorem.

I learned this basic application from the example on the wikipedia article on the theorem. Depending on the book you use, wikipedia might be better for the concrete understanding (it was for me).

share|cite|improve this answer
Why does $\gamma$ contain $3$? – Dennis Gulko Oct 9 '12 at 21:23
Sorry, it doesn't. For some reason, I thought the radius was $2e$. – Arthur Oct 9 '12 at 21:26

Observe that $|3|>2$, hence $g(z)=\frac{e^z}{z-3}$ is analytic in $|z|<3$. So you can rewrite you integral in the form familiar from Cauchy's theorem: (applying the theorem to $g(z)$) $$\int_\gamma\frac{g(z)}{z-0}dz=2\pi ig(0)=-\frac{1}{3}$$

share|cite|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.