## Sections of Sets and Functions

Our definitions today are purely set-theoretical. If is a subset of , then given a point we define the “section” of determined by to be the set

Similarly, we define the section of determined by a point to be the set

Of course, the two concepts are essentially equivalent, and neither really depends on the fact that we have only two factors, but we choose this notation for now. If we don’t so much care about the particular point or , we refer to “an -section” or “a -section”. It should be stressed that these sections are not (as might be supposed) subsets of , but rather an -section is a subset of , while a -section is a subset of .

It should be clear that taking sections commutes with most common set theoretic operations. For example, we compute

Similarly, and ; and similarly for -sections.

Now if is any function defined on and is any point, we define the section of determined by to be the function on defined by . Similarly, the section of determined by a point is the function on defined by . Again, we say that is an -section, and is a -section.

With these definitions down, we turn to measure theory. Let and be measurable spaces, and let be the product space.

If is a measurable rectangle, then every -section is either or , according as or not. Similarly, every -section is either or . That is, every section of a measurable rectangle is measurable. Now we let be the collection of all subsets of for which this is true — if and only if every section of is measurable. Clearly contains all measurable rectangles. It’s also closed under unions and setwise differences — making it a ring — and under monotone limits — making it a -ring. Since is a -ring containing all measurable rectangles, it must contain . Therefore, every section of every measurable set is measurable.

Now if and is any measurable set, then we calculate

Since is measurable, must be measurable, and thus all of its sections are measurable. In particular, is measurable for any measurable , and thus is a measurable function. Similarly we can show that the -section of a measurable function is measurable.

The one caveat is that we treated measurable real-valued functions differently from other ones. Just to be sure, let be a measurable real-valued function, and let be a Borel set. Then we need to ask that be measurable. We can use the above fact that , and the result will follow if we can show that . But we easily calculate

and thus the result follows. The proof that the -section is measurable is similar.

[…] This is the union of a sequence of measurable sets, and so it is measurable. Taking any we find the -section determined by is the set . And this is thus measurable, since all sections of measurable sets are measurable. […]

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[…] then we can define two functions — and — by the formulæ and , where and are the -section determined by and -section determined by , respectively. I say that both and are non-negative […]

Pingback by Measures on Product Spaces « The Unapologetic Mathematician | July 22, 2010 |

[…] call it the “double integral” of over . We can also consider the sections and . For any given , we […]

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[…] a countably infinite product space. For every set and each point , we define the subset as the section of determined by . It should be clear that every section of a measurable rectangle in is a […]

Pingback by Infinite Products, Part 1 « The Unapologetic Mathematician | July 29, 2010 |

Just to think about it. there exists a relation between $(f^{-1}(E))_{x}$ and $E_{x}$? Under what conditions one of them contains the other?

Comment by Camilo | March 4, 2016 |

Well, just write out the definitions. One set is and the other is . What can you conclude from that?

Comment by John Armstrong | March 12, 2016 |