Educação e Pesquisa
Print version ISSN 1517-9702
D'AMBROSIO, Ubiratan. Society, culture, mathematics and its teaching. Educ. Pesqui. [online]. 2005, vol.31, n.1, pp. 99-120. ISSN 1517-9702. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1517-97022005000100008.
One of the effects of the globalized world is a strong tendency to eliminate differences, promoting a planetary culture. Education systems are particularly affected, undergoing strong pressure from international studies and evaluations, inevitably comparative, and sadly competitive. As a result, one observes the gradual elimination of cultural components in the definition of education systems. The constitution of new social imaginaries becomes clear; imaginaries empty of historical, geographical and temporal referents, characterized by a strong presence of the culture of the image. The criteria of classification establish an inappropriate reference that has as its consequence the definition of practices and even of education systems. On the other hand, resistance mechanisms, often unconscious, are activated seeking to safeguard and recover the identifying features of a culture, such as its traditions, cuisine, languages, artistic manifestations in general, and, in doing so, to contribute to cultural diversity, an essential factor to encourage creativity. In this article, the sociocultural basis of mathematics and of its teaching are examined, and also the consequences of globalization and its effects on multicultural education. The concept of culture is discussed, as well as issues related to culture dynamics, resulting in the proposition of a theory of transdisciplinar and transcultural knowledge. Upon such basis the Ethnomathematics Program is presented. A critique is also made of the curriculum presently used, which is in its conception and detailing, obsolete, uninteresting and of little use. A different concept of curriculum is proposed, based on the communicative (literacy), analytical (matheracy), and material (technoracy) instruments.
Keywords : Ethnomathematics; Multiculturalism; Globalization; Curriculum.