Mathematics Education: A Critical Introduction, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Mathematics Education

A Critical Introduction, 1st Edition

By Mark Wolfmeyer


110 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

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Winner of the AESA 2017 Critics' Choice Book Award

Mathematics Education offers both undergraduates and starting-graduate students in education an introduction to the connections that exist between mathematics and a critical orientation to education. This primer shows how concepts like race, class, gender, and language have real effects in the mathematics classroom, and prepares current and future mathematics teachers with a more critical math education that increases accessibility for all students. By refocusing math learning towards the goals of democracy and social and environmental crises, the book also introduces readers to broader contemporary school policy and reform debates and struggles.

Mark Wolfmeyer shows future and current teachers how critical mathematics education can be put into practice with concrete strategies and examples in both formal and informal educational settings. With opportunities for readers to engage in deeper discussion through suggested activities, Mathematics Education’s pedagogical features include:

  • Study Questions for Teachers and Students
  • Text Boxes with Examples of Critical Education in Practice
  • Annotated List of Further Readings
  • Glossary


"Many assume mathematics education is politically neutral. Mark Wolfmeyer's pioneer work demonstrates the fallaciousness of this assumption and offers an important critical alternative."

-Joel Spring, Professor, Graduate Center and Queens College

Mark Wolfmeyer offers more than a primer in this important text. He raises, and addresses, fundamental and critical questions not only about mathematics teaching and learning but also about the role of mathematics education in producing and resisting hierarchies. Equally important, Wolfmeyer turns the mirror on mathematics education to consider how it functions as a white institutional space. I highly recommend this text.

-Danny Martin, Professor, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Curriculum & Instruction

"Concepts like race, class, gender, and language have real effects in the mathematics classroom. Mark Wolfmeyer’s important book brings us fully into such reflections and offers opportunities for readers to engage in deeper discussion."

- Ole Skovsmose, Professor Emeritus, Aalborg University

Table of Contents

Mathematics Education: A Critical Introduction

Series Editor Introduction



Chapter 1: What is mathematics? From mathematicians to philosophers and anthropologists

Chapter 2: Initial examinations of mathematics education: Purpose, problems, and method

Chapter 3: A white institutional space: Race and mathematics education

Chapter 4: Social class hierarchies and mathematics education: To reproduce or interrupt?

Chapter 5: Rationalism, masculinity, and the ‘girl problem’ in mathematics education

Chapter 6: Putting it all together: Intersectionality, current mathematics education policy, and further avenues for exploration

Glossary of terms





About the Author

Mark Wolfmeyer is an Assistant Professor in the College of Education at Kutztown University of Pennsylvania.

About the Series

Critical Introductions in Education

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: