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Reading and Writing the World With Mathematics: Toward a Pedagogy for Social Justice


reviewed by Blidi S. Stemn — March 31, 2006

coverTitle: Reading and Writing the World With Mathematics: Toward a Pedagogy for Social Justice
Author(s): Eric Gutstein
Publisher: Taylor & Francis, London
ISBN: 0415950848, Pages: 257, Year: 2006
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This book, Reading and Writing the World with Mathematics, uses Paulo Freire’s Liberation Education epistemology as a conceptual framework for discussing the teaching and learning of mathematics for social justice in an urban middle school with predominantly Latino students. In addition to the conceptual model, the author provides practical examples of tasks that can guide mathematics teachers as they attempt to investigate sociopolitical issues through mathematics. In this highly informative action research, Gutstein argues that school mathematics should socialize students into interrogative and investigative roles and proactive identities so as to enable them to believe in their own power to contribute to the shaping of their communities and to society in general. The author’s definition of reading the world with mathematics includes the use of mathematics to “understand relations of power, resource inequities, and disparate opportunities between different social groups and to understand explicit discrimination based on race, class, gender,... (preview truncated at 150 words.)


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record, Date Published: March 31, 2006
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 12359, Date Accessed: 10/18/2017 1:51:38 AM

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About the Author
  • Blidi Stemn
    Hofstra University
    E-mail Author
    BLIDI STEMN, Ph.D., is currently an Assistant Professor of Education at Hofstra University. I teach mathematics methods courses for graduate and undergraduate elementary school teachers and have developed and taught the course Learning to Teach Mathematics from a Social Justice Perspective for the past two years. My interests include mathematics teacher education for social justice, mathematics identity formation of African American students, and a problem-based approach to mathematics methods courses. I am currently working on Mathematics Teaching for Social Justice: The Journey of a Mathematics Teacher, an ethnographic and action research paper, and identity formation of high achieving, urban African American students in mathematics. She is also co-PI of Teacher/Leader Quality Partnerships (TQLP) Program, a professional development program with teachers of low performing schools in Hempstead and Roosevelt School Districts in New York. Her publications include “Mathematics Identity Formation of High Achieving African American Students,” Connecticut Mathematics Journal. She is the co-author of two papers: “Do Numbers Have Shapes? Connecting Number Patterns and Shapes Through the Vedic Matrix," Teaching Children Mathematics, and “Mathematical Discourse: It Makes Good Sense,” Connecticut Mathematics Journal.
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