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Mathematics  2002 

Topological model categories generated by finite complexes

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Our main result states that for each finite complex L the category ${\bf TOP}$ of topological spaces possesses a model category structure (in the sense of Quillen) whose weak equivalences are precisely maps which induce isomorphisms of all [L]-homotopy groups. The concept of [L]-homotopy has earlier been introduced by the first author and is based on Dranishnikov's notion of extension dimension. As a corollary we obtain an algebraic characterization of [L]-homotopy equivalences between [L]-complexes. This result extends two classical theorems of J. H. C. Whitehead. One of them -- describing homotopy equivalences between CW-complexes as maps inducing isomorphisms of all homotopy groups -- is obtained by letting $L = \{{\rm point}\}$. The other -- describing n-homomotopy equivalences between at most $(n+1)$-dimensional CW-complexes as maps inducing isomorophisms of k-dimensional homotopy groups with $k \leq n$ -- by letting $L = S^{n+1}$, $n \geq 0$.


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