One might assume the realms of mathematics, statistics and numbers are free from subjectivity — and therefore devoid of racism and white privilege.
Not so, according to a trio of British professors, who just published an article on the issue for the academic journal Race Ethnicity and Education.
Seems that David Gillborn, Paul Warmington and Sean Demack are of the opinion that "quantitative data is no less socially constructed than any other form of research material" and that "racist perspectives" can be found "beneath the façade of supposed quantitative objectivity."
“Contrary to popular belief, and the assertions of many quantitative researchers, numbers are neither objective nor color-blind,” the researchers added, according to Campus Reform.
The professors also look at "Critical Race Theory" as a guide to "future use and analysis of quantitative data."
And what do they mean by that?
For one thing, they write that "numbers are not neutral and should be interrogated for their role in promoting deficit analyses that serve White racial interests."
In addition, they write that the non-neutrality of numbers exists because “quantitative data is often gathered and analyzed in ways that reflect the interests, assumptions, and perceptions of White elites,” Campus Reform added.
Gillborn teaches at the University of Birmingham, Warmington teaches at the University of Warwick and Demack is a senior lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University, the outlet reported. Campus Reform said it attempted to reach them for comment on their findings but none immediately responded.
A growing trend?
TheBlaze previously reported similar findings in academia:
- A mathematics education professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign contributed a chapter to a new book in which she wrote that “on many levels, mathematics itself operates as Whiteness.”
- A math professor at Brooklyn College recently wrote an academic paper arguing that rewards based on hard work in math classes are a “tool of whiteness” and that they oppress minorities.