Abstract: The view, which has prevailed since the time of Plato, is that mathematics represents ‘eternal truths’, and that it is similarly objective in its portrayal of knowledge. The truthfulness and objectivity of mathematics are now being challenged by writers arguing that mathematics is culturally based, represents the views of a particular class and background and is a consequence of humans arguing over proofs (e.g., Bishop, 1988; Lakatos, 1976; Walkerdine, 1990; Wilder, 1982). Ethnomathematics, for example, takes the view that mathematics has developed differently in different cultures and that exploration of how different cultures understand mathematics and mathematical concepts is important, not only for mathematics but also for cultural understanding (Presmeg, 1997). Thus, as the Queensland education system reflects mainstream Eurocentric culture, non-Eurocentric cultures, such as Indigenous, find little relevance within traditional school mathematics. As Matthews, Watego, Cooper and Baturo (2005) argue The education system, as a reflection of the dominant society’s views (Jones et al., 1996; Matthews et al., 2003), has devalued Indigenous cultures as a primitive, simplistic society. This is further reinforced by the notion of ‘technological progress’, which has limited Indigenous peoples’ ability to participate in scientific endeavours and allowed the continual exploration of Indigenous knowledge for scientific purposes. An education based on these principles, only serves to marginalise Indigenous people and undermine the significance of their Indigenous identity.
Warren, Elizabeth, Baturo, Annette R., Cooper, Tom J., 2010, Pedagogies to Support Indigenous Students’ Mathematics Learning in Rural and Remote Queensland Classrooms, Volume:10, Book Section, viewed 03 April 2020, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=5306.