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I cannot answer the OP's question about cross-cultural/international perspectives, but here is a historical perspective that may be helpful. The issue here (whether the category "rectangles" includes or excludes the category "squares") is one aspect of a larger question having to do with whether the classification of quadrilaterals should be partitional or ...


11

This question seems like a big opportunity for casual social science conjecturing which may or may not be productive. I hope I can clarify a couple of things in my response. According to your supporting statement, your question is "what are the possible explanations for why so many mathematicians you look up on Wikipedia are Jewish?" For the purposes of ...


8

There is a model of how people progress towards abstract reasoning through the subject of geometry called the Van Hiele model. The model describes five levels: visualization, analysis, abstraction, deduction, rigor. It dates to the 1950's, and continues to influence curricula. In the analysis level, children do not allow overlaps in categories, and will ...


7

My take for what it is worth. I see at least two very strong statements you make. I don't see strong statements as necessarily problematic; sometimes it is very important to take a stand. But stands often have to be defended. The first very strong statement essentially summarized in your sentence: Math never cares what your social background is, it does ...


7

The book by Masha Gessen on Grigory Perelman has a fascinating description of the Russian math camps, specialized schools (e.g., Specialized Mathematics School Number 239 in Leningrad), and the instructors who excel in training the future IMO candidates. One such instructor was Valery Ryzhik (School 239), but the most influential was Sergei Rukshin: "......


7

My answer is just my educated guess and so it is probably flawed. But I think besides mathematicians, you could also include writers or other scientists, think Freud or Oppenheimer for example. Steven Gubkin in his comments already pointed the major points. I just wanted to add the practice of Judaism is centered on reading and studying the Torah but since ...


5

As soon as possible. They will need to read English sooner rather than later (not just for math!). Most of the time the saying that last month's results are circulated privately (or via blogs), what was done the last term is in the conference, papers are published 2 or 3 years later, the papers are summarized in a textbook some 5 years after that, and ...


5

British universities have complex systems of teaching quality assurance, mandated by the QAA (http://www.qaa.ac.uk/en). Exams are typically set by a lecturer, checked by a colleague in the same department, and then sent for at least brief review by an External Examiner who is a senior academic at another University. There are also policies about marking ...


4

I just came across this discussion https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16605831 which reminded me of your question. The perspective isn't exactly math and isn't exactly not-math but rather, a question in object-oriented programming. Several of the comments (search for rectangle and square to get the relevant comments) there are worth reading on their own, ...


2

Indeed, it might be a problem in countries where there is rarely any native literature. Because in such countries English competes against other transnationial languages (Spanish in Hispanic America, Arabic in Islamic world, French and Swahili in parts of Africa, Russian in some post-Soviet states, …), not much against native languages of local population. ...


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