The theory of near-rings has arisen in a variety of ways. There is a natural desire to generalise the theory of rings and skew fields by relaxing some of their defining axioms. It has also been the hope of some mathematicians that certain problems in group theory, particularly\ud involving permutation groups and group representations, may perhaps be clarified by developing a coherent algebraic theory of near-rings. Moreover, there is an increasing recognition by mathematicians in many branches of the subject, both pure and applied, of the ubiquity of\ud near-ring like objects.\ud \ud The first steps in the subject were taken by Dickson and Zassenhans with their studies of 'near-fields', and by Wielandt with his classification of an important class of abstract near-rings. Papers by Frohlich, Blackett, Betsch and Laxton developed the theory considerably. Lately authors such as Beidleman, Ramakotaiah, Tharmanatram, Maxson, Malone and Clay have all added to our knowledge.\ud \ud The history of the subject has been strongly influenced by our knowledge of ring theory, and although this has often been beneficial it must not be overlooked that a number of important problems in near-ring theory have no real parallel in the theory of rings. It is probably best to try to preserve a balance, and not to endeavour exclusively, either to generalise theorems from ring theory irrespective\ud of their usefulness, or to ignore the theory of rings and attempt to formulate a completely independent theory. In many cases our results are generalisations of theorems from ring-theory but at certain important junctures we will explicitly use the fact that we are dealing with a near-ring which is not a ring. This is a very interesting\ud development in the subject.\ud \ud We proceed, in the first chapter, with a review of the terms and notation that will be used in this thesis.\ud \ud Where definitions and concepts are of a specialized or technical nature and only used in one section, it seems more sensible to postpone introducing them until a more natural point in the proceedings.\ud \ud Chapter 2 gives a summary of the results on the various radicals corresponding to the Jacobson radical for associative rings. Most of these results are well known and readily available in the literature. We also consider near-rings with one, or more, of these radicals zero.\ud \ud We defined, in Chapter 1, three different types of primitive\ud near-ring, which are all genuine generalisations of the ring theoretic concept. Of these three, the two most important are 2-primitive and 0-primitive near-rings. In Chapter 3, we examine 2-primitive near-rings with certain natural conditions imposed on them. A theorem is obtained\ud which could be considered to be the equivalent result for near-rings of the theorem classifying simple, artinian rings, due originally to Wedderburn and redeveloped by Jacobson.\ud \ud Chapters 4 and 5 deal with 0-primitive near-rings satisfying\ud certain conditions. Chapter 5 is a generalisation of Chapter 4, but we felt that the mathematical techniques involved would be clearer if the special case in Chapter 4 was expounded first. In these two chapters we classify a sizeable class of 0-primitive near-rings with identity.\ud and descending chain condition on right ideals.\ud \ud Several types of prime near-rings have been developed in the\ud literature. In Chapter 6 we examine these and related concepts.\ud \ud In the theory of rings, Goldies' classification of prime and\ud semi-prime ring with ascending chain conditions, has been of immense importance. Whether such a result could be obtained in the theory of near-rings is a matter for conjecture, at the moment. We have made a start on the problem with the construction of a class of near-rings which\ud behave in a very similar way to Prime rings with the Goldie chain conditions. This is the content of Chapter 7. The inspiration for its came mainly from the proof of Goldies' first theorem, due to C. Procesi, which is featured in Jacobson's book. (Jacobson ).\ud \ud Chapter 8, is an attempt to initiate the development of a theory of vector groups and near-algebras which would play an important röle-in the future theory of near-rings, in a way, perhaps, similar to the Ale vector spaces and algebras play in ring theory. This may lead, in time, to results on 2-primitive near-rings with identity and a minimal right\ud ideal, for example, or a Galois theory for certain 2-primitive nearrings. For the former problem, the experience of the semi-group theorists (Hoehake  etc. ) may prove useful.\ud \ud Finally a note on the numbering of results and definitions etc. If a reference is made, containing only two numbers, e. g. 1.12 then this means, "item 12 of section 1 of the present chapter". If a reference reads: 3.1.12, then this means "item 12 of section 1 of Chapter 3
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