Professor Claims Math, Algebra, And Geometry Promote "White Privilege"

Authored by Ian Miles Cheong via DailyCaller.com,

A University of Illinois math professor believes that algebra and geometry perpetuate “white privilege” because Greek terms give Caucasians unearned credit for the subject.

But that isn’t the professor’s only complaint. She also believes that evaluations for math proficiency perpetuates discrimination against minority students, if they do worse than their white counterparts.

Rochelle Gutierrez argues in a newly published math education book for teachers that they must be aware of the identity politics surrounding the subject of mathematics.

“On many levels, mathematics itself operates as Whiteness,” she argues with complete sincerity, according to Campus Reform.

 

“Who gets credit for doing and developing mathematics, who is capable in mathematics, and who is seen as part of the mathematical community is generally viewed as White.”

Gutierrez argues that subjects like algebra and geometry, which relate to arithmetic, also perpetuate racism and white privilege. She worries that “curricula emphasizing terms like Pythagorean theorem and pi perpetuate a perception that mathematics was largely developed by Greeks and other Europeans.”

Gutierrez claims that the importance of math skills in the real world also places what she calls an “unearned privilege” for those who are good at it. Because most math teachers in the United States are white, white people stand to benefit from their grasp of the subject disproportionate to members of other races.

“Are we really that smart just because we do mathematics?” she asks, raising the question as to why math professors get more grants than “social studies or English” professors.

 

“If one is not viewed as mathematical, there will always be a sense of inferiority that can be summoned,” she says, claiming that minorities “have experienced microaggressions from participating in math classrooms… [where people are] judged by whether they can reason abstractly.”

To resolve the intelligence gap, Gutierrez calls on math professors to develop a sense of “political conocimiento,” a Spanish term for “political knowledge for teaching.”

She concludes her argument with the claim that all knowledge is “relational,” or is, in other words, relative. “Things cannot be known objectively; they must be known subjectively.”

Comments

Escrava Isaura overbet Tue, 10/24/2017 - 11:23 Permalink

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This is the problem with a fanatic society, it makes decent people stupid. Rochelle Gutierrez : “On many levels, mathematics itself operates as Whiteness,” Dear Mrs. Gutierrez, math doesn’t have color, nation, or language. Math on the north hemisphere is the same math on the South Hemisphere. Math is science.  Religion does operate by color/culture. Science, it does not.  

In reply to by overbet

HenryKissinger… yomutti2 Tue, 10/24/2017 - 11:34 Permalink

"I’m very much in favor of science, but I’m skeptical of people who excessively invoke science as an incantation of sorts. When you use the word science it’s often a tell, like in poker, that you’re bluffing and that no science at all is going on. We have political science, we have social science. We don’t have physical science or chemical science. There are just physics and chemistry, there’s no debate. If you think about other areas where people use the word science excessively, I think those are areas that we should perhaps be a lot more skeptical of." <<Peter Thiel>>

In reply to by yomutti2

El Vaquero Ignatius Tue, 10/24/2017 - 12:17 Permalink

You know what the roots are for her fucking philosophy, right?  It's the idea that we cannot know if we each view the world in the same way, i.e. if we each experience the same things under the same circumstances.  Therefore, we should assume that nobody does, and then every possible explanation for anything is as good as another.  That is the postmodern root.  It boils down to the question that you probably asked when you were six years old:  "How do I know that I see the same blue that you see?"  And the simple answer is, we probably do, but even if not, we both identify the same phenomenon that most people call "blue" as blue.  In other words, it is true that a given event may have infinite possible explanations, but only a few are going to make sense.  The cultural Marxism we see today is coming out of this postmodern bullshit.  These people rely on consensus rather than logic and empirical observation.  That makes them dangerous if in power, and easily beatable in a real physical fight.

In reply to by Ignatius

Herd Redirecti… Ignatius Tue, 10/24/2017 - 12:27 Permalink

Exactly, this is why it pisses me off when people talk about the dissolution of the USSR as 'the defeat of Communism'!  If only!  I would still be celebrating today if it were the case.  But no, all the hardcores had already emigrated out of the USSR, long before, 20 years or more earlier, to continue their ideological subversion of the West.  And it just so happens that many of them came to the US, via Israel! (they called it the 'Soviet Aliyah', and claimed they were 'fleeing persecution', which they were, but they were persecuted for their subversion, not their religious beliefs!)

In reply to by Ignatius

Manthong loebster Tue, 10/24/2017 - 17:38 Permalink

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  Well the good news is that Trig puts fun hi-freq sines right up your privileged white butt and calc screws you infinitely Schumer-like eight ways to Sunday. ……. And the wife says “Math is Hard”.

In reply to by loebster

Manthong Sanity Bear Wed, 10/25/2017 - 00:19 Permalink

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 Maybe…but  it could be polynomial dysphoria Sorry to be going so far over the head of the run-of-the-mill quant economist

In reply to by Sanity Bear

ich1baN HenryKissinger… Tue, 10/24/2017 - 18:25 Permalink

Here is a list of her publications from her resume you linked.... a couple titles that caught my eye "1) Playing/changing the game:  Rethinking the knowledge that mathematics teachers need to teach marginalized students. 2) Changing the game in mathematics education:  Why academics need to embrace the tensions3) Playing/changing the game:  Effective mathematics teachers, educational equity, and Latin@ and African American youth.   Is there anything this woman does that doesn't presume race as the basis of math? Didn't know math could be so racial.... her works read like a 2nd rate Communist Manifesto constantly referencing "playing/changing the game" and focusing on only races other than Asians or whites. Wtf happened to treat everyone equal regardless of skin color and treat everyone according to their character?  JOURNAL ARTICLES (In Print and Accepted)*Gutiérrez, R.  (2016).  Strategies for Creative Insubordination in mathematics teaching.  Teaching for Excellence and Equity in Mathematics, 7(1), 52-60. *Gutiérrez, R.  (2015).  HOLA:  Listening to Latin@ students.  Mathematics Teacher, 109(4), 271-277. +Gutiérrez, R.  (2013).  Why (urban) mathematics teachers need political knowledge.  Journal of Urban Mathematics Education, 6(2), 7-19.    +Gutiérrez, R.  (2010/2013).  The sociopolitical turn in mathematics education.  Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 44(1), 37-68.  Appeared online on 2010; in print in 2013. D’Ambrosio, B., Frankenstein, M., Gutiérrez, R., Kastberg, S., Martin, D. B., Moschovich, J., Taylor, E., & Barnes, D.  (2013).  Positioning oneself in mathematics education research.  Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 44(1), 11-22. D’Ambrosio, B., Frankenstein, M., Gutiérrez, R., Kastberg, S., Martin, D. B., Moschovich, J., Taylor, E., & Barnes, D.  (2013).  Addressing racism.  Journal for Research in Mathematics Education, 44(1), 23-36. *Gutiérrez, R.  (2012). Embracing "Nepantla:" Rethinking knowledge and its use in teaching. REDIMAT-Journal of Research in Mathematics Education, 1(1), 29-56.  *Dance, L. J., Gutiérrez, R., Hermes, M. (2010).  More like jazz than classical:  Reciprocal interactions among educational researchers and respondents.  Harvard Educational Review.  80(3), 327-352. +Gutiérrez, R.  (2009).  Framing equity:  Helping students "play the game" and "change the game."  Teaching for Excellence and Equity in Mathematics, 1(1), 4-8. *Gutiérrez, R.  (2009).  Embracing the inherent tensions in teaching mathematics from an equity stance.  Democracy and Education, 18(3), 9-16. Gutiérrez, R.  (2009).  Identity and power issues in teaching students mathematics and science.  Hispanic Outlook in Higher Education, 19(18), 27.  *Gutiérrez, R.  (2008).  A "gap gazing" fetish in mathematics education?  Problematizing research on the achievement gap.  Journal for Research in Mathematics Education.  39(4), 357-364. *Lubienski, S. T. & Gutiérrez, R.  (2008).  Bridging the "gaps" in perspectives on equity in mathematics education.  Journal for Research in Mathematics Education.  39(4), 365-371. *Gutiérrez, R. (2003).  Beyond Essentialism:  The complexity of language in teaching Latina/o students mathematics.  American Educational Research Journal. 39(4), 1047-1088. *Gutiérrez, R.  (2002).  Enabling the practice of mathematics teachers in context:  Towards a new equity research agenda.  Mathematical Thinking and Learning. 4(2&3), 145-187.  *#Gutiérrez, R.  (2000).  Advancing African American, Urban Youth in Mathematics:  Unpacking the Success of One Mathematics Department.  American Journal of Education.  109(1), 63-111. *Gutiérrez, R. (1999).   Advancing Urban Latina/o Youth in Mathematics:  Lessons from an Effective High School Mathematics Department.  The Urban Review, 31(3), 263-281. +Gutiérrez, R. (1998).  Departments as Contexts for Understanding and Reforming Secondary Teachers' Work:  Continuing the Dialogue.  Journal of Curriculum Studies, 30(1), 95-103. *#Gutiérrez, R. (1996).  Practices, Beliefs, and Cultures of High School Mathematics Departments:  Understanding their Influence on Student Advancement.  Journal of Curriculum Studies, 28(5), 495-529.  JOURNAL ARTICLES (Submitted and Under Review)Gutiérrez, R. & Gregson, S.  (submitted).  Mathematics teachers and creative insubordination:  Taking a stand in high-poverty schools.  Mathematical Thinking and Learning.  BOOKSGutiérrez, R. (in preparation).  The mirror test:  Why mathematics teachers need political knowledge to reclaim the profession.  CHAPTERS IN BOOKS+Gutiérrez, R.  (in press). Political conocimiento for teaching mathematics:  Why teachers need it and how to develop it?  To appear in Kastberg, S., Tyminski, A. M., Lischka, A., & Sanchez, W. (eds.), Building support for scholarly practices in mathematics methods.  Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators. +Gutiérrez, R., Gerardo, J. M., & Vargas, G.V. (in press).  Rehearsing for the politics of teaching mathematics.  To appear in Kastberg, S., Tyminski, A. M., Lischka, A., & Sanchez, W. (eds.), Building support for scholarly practices in mathematics methods.  Association of Mathematics Teacher Educators. +Gutiérrez, R.  (2015).  Nesting in Nepantla:  The importance of maintaining tensions in our work.  In Joseph, N. M., Haynes, C. & Cobb, F. (eds.), Interrogating Whiteness and relinquishing power: White faculty’s commitment to racial consciousness in STEM classrooms, (pp. 253-282).  New York:  Peter Lang. +Gutiérrez, R. (2014). Improving education and the mistaken focus on “raising test scores” and “closing the achievement gap.” In Gorski, P. C. & Zenkov, K. (ed.) The Big Lies of School Reform: Finding Better Solutions for the Future of Public Education, pp 17-28.  New York: Routledge. +Gutiérrez, R. & Irving, S. E. (2013).  Making mathematics matter for Black and Latin@ students.  In Wolfe, R. E., A. Steinberg, & N. Hoffman (eds.) Anytime, anywhere:  Student centered learning for schools and teachers, pp. 123-152.  Cambridge:  Harvard Education Press.  +Gutiérrez, R.  (2012).  Beyond the achievement gap: What it takes to become an effective leader in mathematics for marginalized youth.   In Theoharis, G. and Brooks, J. S. (eds.), What every principal needs to know:  Instructional leadership for equitable and excellent schools, pp. 31- 54.  New York: Teachers College Press.  +Gutiérrez, R.  (2012).  Stand and deliver:  The challenge of language to the study of mathematics.  In Valdivia, A. N. & M. Garcia (eds.) Mapping Latina/Latino Studies:  An interdisciplinary reader, pp. 169-200.  New York: Peter Lang. +Gutiérrez, R.  (2012).  Issues of identity and power in teaching Latin@ students mathematics.  In Celedón-Pattichis, S. & Ramirez, N. (eds.). Beyond good teaching:  Strategies that are imperative for ELLs in mathematics classrooms, pp. 119-126.  Reston, NJ:  National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. +Gutiérrez, R.  (2012).  Context matters: How should we conceptualize equity in mathematics education?  In Choppin, J., Herbel-Eisenmann, B., & Wagner, D., (eds.), Equity in discourse for mathematics education: Theories, practices, and policies, pp. 17-33.  New York: Springer. +Strutchens, M. E., Quander, J. R., & Gutiérrez, R.  (2011). Mathematics learning communities that foster reasoning and sense making for all high school students.  In Strutchens, M. E. (Ed.) Focus in high school mathematics: Fostering reasoning and sense making for all students, pp. 101-114.  Reston, VA:  National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Gutiérrez, R. and Dixon-Román, E.  (2011). Beyond gap gazing:  How can thinking about education comprehensively help us (re)envision mathematics education?  In Atweh, B., Graven, M., Secada, W., and Valero, P.  (eds.), Mapping equity and quality in mathematics education, (pp. 21-34).  New York: Springer. +Gutiérrez, R.  (2007).  (Re)defining equity:  The importance of a critical perspective.  In Nasir, N.  and Cobb, P.  (Eds.) Diversity, equity, and access to mathematical ideas, pp. 37-50.  New York: Teachers College Press. +Gutiérrez, R. and Morales, H. (2002).  Teacher community, socialization, and biography in reforming mathematics.   In Lee, V. E. and Bryk, A.  (Eds.)  Reforming Chicago’s high schools:  Research perspectives on school and system level change, pp. 223-249.  Chicago, IL:  Consortium on Chicago School Research. +Gutiérrez, R. (2000).  Is the Multiculturalization of Mathematics Doing Us More Harm than Good?   In Mahalingam, R. and McCarthy, C. (Eds.) Multicultural Curriculum:  New Directions for Social Theory, Practice, and Policy, (pp. 199-219).  New York:  Routledge.  CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGSGutiérrez, R.  (2015, Nov.).  Risky business:  Mathematics teachers using creative insubordination.  Proceedings of the Annual Conference of Psychology of Mathematics Education North America.  East Lansing, MI. Gutiérrez, R.  (2014).  La importancia de identidad y poder en la matemática educativa (The importance of identity and power in mathematics education).  Proceedings of the Décimo Octavas Jornadas Nacionales de Educación Matemática (18th Annual National Conference on Mathematics Education).  November, 2014.  University of Santiago, CHILE. Gutiérrez, R.  (2013).  Mathematics teachers using creative insubordination to advocate for student understanding and robust mathematical identities.  Proceedings of the Annual Conference of Psychology of Mathematics Education North America.  Chicago, IL. Gerardo, J. M. & Gutiérrez, R. (2013). Negotiating Nos/otr@s relationships in an after-school mathematics club.  Proceedings of the Annual Conference of Psychology of Mathematics Education North America.  Chicago, IL. Gutiérrez, R. & Dixon-Roman, E.  (2011). Beyond gap gazing:  How can thinking about education comprehensively help us (re)envision mathematics education?  Proceedings of the 2011 Mathematics Education and Contemporary Society conference.  Manchester, United Kingdom.  ENGLAND.  +Gutiérrez, R. (2008). What is "Nepantla" and how can it help physics education researchers conceptualize knowledge for teaching?  In Sabella, M. (Ed.).  Proceedings of the 2008 annual meeting of the Physics Education Research Conference (pp. 3-11).  Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.  University of Alberta. +Gutiérrez, R. (2007)  Context matters:  Equity, success, and the future of mathematics education.  In Lamberg, T. & Wiest, L. R. (Eds.).  Proceedings of the 29th annual meeting of the North American Chapter of the International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education  (pp. 1-18).  Stateline (Lake Tahoe), Nevada.  University of Nevada, Reno.  +Gutiérrez, R.  (2004).  The complex nature of practice for urban (mathematics) teachers.  Proceedings of the Rockefeller Foundation conference:  Investigating the practice of school improvement:  Theory, methodology, and relevance. August 10-15, Bellagio, ITALY.  Available at http://dls.sesp.northwestern.edu/bellagio/papers.html WHITE PAPERS/BULLETINS/REPORTSChao, T., Murray, E., & Gutiérrez, R.  (2014).  What are classroom practices that support equity-based mathematics teaching?  Research Brief published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Gutiérrez, R. & Irving, S. (2012).  Student centered learning: Latin@s, Blacks, and mathematics. A white paper commissioned by the Nellie Mae Foundation.  Boston: Nellie Mae. Gutiérrez, R., Bay-Williams, J., and Kanold, T.D.  (2008). Moving beyond access and achievement:  What should mathematics teachers and leaders consider when addressing equity issues?  NCTM News Bulletin, 1, 3.  Reston: NCTM.  Gutiérrez, R. (2008).  Framing equity:  Helping students "play the game" and "change the game."  Noticias.  4(1), 1-3.   TODOS Mathematics for All.  Gutiérrez, R.  (2008).  Realizing the potential of Chicanas/os and Native Americans:  Engaging identity and power issues in teaching students mathematics and science.  SACNAS News.  11(1), 10-11, 15.  Bishop, A., Bazzell, I., Gutiérrez, R., & Johnston, D., Stengrim, L., Westcoat, J.  (2007).  Great Campus scoping study:  Partnering university teaching with community needs.  University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Chancellor's Task Force on Civic Commitment for the 21st Century.  Champaign, IL. (42 pp.) BOOK REVIEWSGutiérrez, R. (1997).  Latino High School Graduation:  Defying the Odds, by Harriet D. Romo and Toni Falbo (book review).  American Journal of Education, 105(1), 117-121. MANUSCRIPTS IN PROGRESSGutiérrez, R., Irving, S. E., Gerardo, J. M., & Vargas, G. E. (in preparation). Mathematics, marginalized youth, and creative insubordination: A model for preparing teachers to reclaim the profession.  To be submitted to American Educational Research Journal. Gutiérrez, R.  (in preparation).  Mathematics teaching as subversive activity. To be submitted to Mathematical Thinking and Learning.  Gerardo, J. M. & Gutiérrez, R. (in preparation). Systemic Functional Linguistics as a tool to examine positions of nos/otr@s in mathematics education discussions.  To be submitted to Linguistics and Education.  Invited speaker at the Conference on Chicago High School Reform, University of Chicago.  Chicago, IL. Developing and Sustaining a Teacher Community that Advances Latina/Latino Students in Mathematics:  What it Takes. March, 2001. Invited speaker for McNair Scholars Program, University of Illinois.  The Academy as a Place for Knowledge Construction and Activism.  (January, 2001) Invited participant, Center for Advanced Study seminar:  Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Theory, Methodology, and Curriculum in Latina/o Studies, UIUC (Spring, 1999) Chair, Mathematics Board of Directors, Educare (a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of Latinos in mathematics), (1996-1998). Keynote speaker, Calculus Award Night for parents and students, Lake View High School, Chicago, IL.  Mathematics and Your Future:  The Sky's the Limit.  (December, 1997) Invited guest speaker for graduate student seminar on Women and the Academy, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Avoiding Straight Lines and Boxes:  Life as a Latina Academic. (October, 1997) Invited guest speaker for Phi Delta Epsilon (education honor society) undergraduate students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Myths and Facts about Students in Urban Settings.  (October, 1997) Invited panelist in the workshop Transition Mathematics:  Adapting to Diverse Learners.  Developed for Baltimore High School mathematics teachers. (August, 1997) Invited speaker for career class at DeAnza Community College, San Jose, CA. What does a professor of education do?   (May, 1997) Invited panelist for the Spencer Foundation Dissertation-Year Fellows' Conference on Pedagogy.  Balancing Teaching and Research. (March, 1997) Invited speaker for Development and Socialization Process  (DASP) workshop series, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Student Advancement and High School Mathematics Departments. (January, 1997) Panelist for Latina/o Studies Program, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Get to know your professors night. (December, 1996)   

In reply to by HenryKissinger…

Blankenstein Shemp 4 Victory Tue, 10/24/2017 - 14:22 Permalink

This.  She doesn't even have a degree in mathematics.  She should have ZERO input on any mathematics curriculum.   "Gutierrez has earned a Ph.D., Curriculum and Instruction, from the University of Chicago, 1995, an M.A., Curriculum and Instruction, from the University of Chicago, 1995, and a B.A., Human Biology, from Stanford University, 1990." http://www.lls.illinois.edu/faculty_staff/Rochelle_Gutierrez.html

In reply to by Shemp 4 Victory

STP Blankenstein Tue, 10/24/2017 - 16:50 Permalink

Do you want to see what SUPER STUPID looks like.  Read this stinking pile of feces from her bio page.  How about just teaching math?Gutierrez's current research focuses upon understanding the development of teacher practice and teaching communities that achieve equity in students' mathematics participation and achievement. She strives to situate teacher practice in a socio-cultural and political context of schooling and broader society. She is currently involved in three related research projects. The first project attempts to understand how a partnership between the mathematics department in a Chicago high school and a group of pre-service teachers at the University of Illinois influences the dispositions and practices of those (pre- and inservice-) teachers and their students. A second project is a year-long case study of 2 "secundarias" (middle schools) in Mexico, one of which has a long standing tradition of strong teacher community and student advancement and the other is a more traditional/individualistic teacher environment. The goals of that project are to undertand some of the cultural practices in mathematics teaching in Mexican secondary schools, as well as some of the relationships and tensions between teacher community and individual teacher practice. The third research project is more theoretical in its approach and builds upon the work of scholars in Latina/Latino Studies, specifically the notion of "Nepantla" and "conocimiento" in the work of Gloria Anzaldúa, in order to help reconceptualize what might count as knowledge for equity teaching. A long term goal is to understand what it takes to build equity-based teacher communities in places where they do not already exist.  Gutierrez has earned a Ph.D., Curriculum and Instruction, from the University of Chicago, 1995, an M.A., Curriculum and Instruction, from the University of Chicago, 1995, and a B.A., Human Biology, from Stanford University, 1990.

In reply to by Blankenstein

bluez maxblockm Tue, 10/24/2017 - 16:41 Permalink

I would say there is such a thing as credible objectivity, but not absolute objectivity, since the human mind is not perfect. Credible subjectivity exists too, but it's a different thing.Unfortunately, in this age of greedy knowledge rationing, we have people like this woman who spent half her life in school, and who yet cannot actually think properly. This will not end well.

In reply to by maxblockm

Miffed Microbi… Shemp 4 Victory Tue, 10/24/2017 - 15:17 Permalink

I was required to meet a counselor because I hadn't chose my major in my second year of college. He said they advise students with no majors to pursue education because having no clear abilities or focus. Sadly I do have some talents as a teacher but that pissed me off so much I picked Biology on the spot.

Personally I think the brightest in any field should be in education ( if they have an ability to teach which is not necessarily linked to intelligence). The crop of teachers today seem to be challenged to walk and chew gum simultaneously and are held to no accountability. But, then again, so are the students. I guess it's just hopeless.

Miffed

In reply to by Shemp 4 Victory