Mathematics and power: an alliance in the foundations of mathematics and its teaching. (English)

ZDM, Int. J. Math. Educ. 46, No. 7, 1061-1072 (2014).

Summary: Following a genealogic approach, this paper discusses how logic and calculation are linked to epistemology, spirituality and politics; how mathematics education can be understood as an institution for a mathematical enculturation; and how, therefore, mathematics education necessarily (re)produces techniques of power which privilege some children while disadvantaging others. This approach criticises other critical studies on social dimensions of mathematics education which argue that the social dimensions are to be found in the application or teaching of mathematics alone. Instead, mathematics itself has, since its very beginning, been a knowledge which allows power, represents a specific world view and serves the interests of certain groups in society.