The Unapologetic Mathematician

The Maximality of Standard Tableaux

Standard tableaux have a certain maximality property with respect to the dominance order on tabloids. Specifically, if $t$ is standard and $\{s\}$ appears as a summand in the polytabloid $e_t$, then $\{t\}\trianglerighteq\{s\}$.

Any such $\{s\}$ comes from $s=\pi t$, where $\pi\in C_t$. We will make our induction on the number of “column inversions” in $s$. That is, the number of pairs of entries $k that are in the same column of $s$, but which are “out of order”, in the sense that $k$ is in a lower row than $l$.

Given any such pair, the dominance lemma tells us that $\{s\}\triangleleft(k\,l)\{s\}$. That is, by “untwisting” the column inversion, we can move up the dominance order while preserving the columns. It should also be clear that $(k\,l)\{s\}$ has fewer column inversions than $\{s\}$ does. But if we undo all the column inversions, the tableau we’re left with must be standard. That is, it must be $\{t\}$ itself.