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Chapter 14. The Power and Limits of Prof... > Professions Based on the Ideal of Ma...

Professions Based on the Ideal of Mathematics and Abstract Quantification

If there are professions free from human fallibility and vested interest, it is those based in mathematics, for presumably the study of abstract quantification favors no group over any other and, therefore, seems least likely to encourage or engender self-deception in its practitioners. But even a cursory examination of the topic suggests a gap between ideal and reality even here.

Let us briefly review the promise of math instruction itself, a promise used to justify the large sums of money necessary to maintain math instruction at all levels of schooling. That promise can be stated in the following terms:


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