The New Math: A Political History (Paperback)Christopher John Phillips (author)
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Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
Number of pages: 224
Weight: 327 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 13 mm
"The New Math is well written, well documented, and well contextualized. . . . This gem of a book uses its ephemeral topic to shed light on the broader entanglement of knowledge, politics, ideology, and citizenship at the height of the Cold War."--Elizabeth Popp Berman, University at Albany, SUNY "Journal of American History "
"At the intersection of the history of science and history of education, The New Math offers a compelling argument for understanding curriculum reform efforts in mathematics within the context of postwar/Cold War America. Making sense of these reform efforts as a response to the American experience after the war--including the efforts to return to normalcy, the rise of mass/consumer culture, the explosion of an unsettling (for adults) new youth culture, the expansion of secondary education, and the ascendancy of academic (particularly scientific and technical) expertise--enables the story of the new math reforms to shed a broader light on the political and cultural changes taking place during this period. This story provides insights into public perceptions of expertise and the perceived role of the academic (or any kind of) expert in American culture. A quality piece of scholarship."--John L. Rudolph, University of Wisconsin-Madison "author of "Scientists in the Classroom: The Cold War Reconstruction of American Science Education" "
"The New Math is ambitious, rich, and remarkably well-written. During the middle decades of the twentieth century, many groups struggled to articulate what 'mathematics' is, what 'mathematicians' actually do, and how a new approach to mathematics instruction could craft ideal citizens in America's schools. Mathematics teaching became a symbolic arena to sort out competing notions of proper thinking in the nuclear age. Drawing upon an impressive range of sources, Phillips vividly charts the surprising plasticity of 'mathematics' among professional scholars and the voting public in Cold War America."--David Kaiser, MIT "author of "How the Hippies Saved Physics: Science, Counterculture, and the Quantum Revival" "
"Importantly, The New Math explores not just the production of these textbooks but also what happened when they were actually brought into American classrooms and engaged by teachers, students, and parents. As a result, in addition to being a fascinating political history it's also a model of how we can treat the archaeology of the classroom as a way to approach the history of science."--Carla Nappi "New Books in Science, Technology, and Society "
"The New Math is not strictly for history buffs. There are several parallels between the New Math era as described in the book and today's reform efforts, chief of which is the assertion that increased attention to mathematics and science (i.e., the STEM of today) will guarantee the United States' international standing. . . . The lessons of the New Math era are instructive for us today, and that is why this is an important book."--Mathematics Teacher