2 December 2009
This talk is about the ordinary representation theory of finite groups of Lie type. I will begin by carefully reviewing algebraic groups and finite groups of Lie type and the construction and properties of (ordinary) Gelfand--Graev characters. I will then introduce generalized Gelfand--Graev characters, which are constructed using the Lie algebra of the ambient algebraic group. Towards the end I hope to give an idea of how generalized Gelfand--Graev characters can and have been used to attack Lusztig's conjecture and the role this plays in the determination of the character tables of finite groups of Lie type.