From The City Journal Via Arts & Letters Daily: ‘Who Needs Mathematicians For Math, Anyway?’

Full article here.

In the City Journal,  you know some of what to expect:  we’ve moved away from our best moral and intellectual traditions in favor of excessive egalitarianism.   Some of the culprits are on the political left and they need to be stopped.

“Some influential educators sought to dismiss the traditional curriculum altogether, viewing it as a white, Christian, heterosexual-male product that unjustly valorized rational, abstract, and categorical thinking over the associative, experience-based, and emotion-laden thinking supposedly more congenial to females and certain minorities.”

This, of course, has some truth to it.  There are a large mass of educrats and vague-thinking do-gooders who can end up seeking a set of political, social and educational goals instead of well…math:

“The math educators’ rising influence over the last few decades is reflected in the content of, or response to, two influential national reports.”

You’ll have to click on the link for those reports.

I would also argue that there seem to be a set of social, cultural and economic reasons that at least India and China (and at least right now) have an advantage. These reasons tie learning mathematics (as the basis for the sciences at least) with a good job and social respect…money…family and national pride…a way out of poverty…a way to get married…etc.

Some will doomsay, but these are very real and difficult problems.

Also On This Site: A Shortage Of Skilled American Workers At Microsoft?

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