Louis D. Grey


Louis D. Grey reviews the book Innumeracy : Mathematical Illiteracy and its Consequences by John Allen Paulos. New York: Hill & Wang, 1988.

By "innumeracy" Paulos means "an inability to deal comfortably with the fundamental notions of number and chance." Paulos is talking about the problem of mathematical illiteracy, a problems that afflicts people who are otherwise very knowledgeable.

Paolos uses many examples, some serious and some amusing, to illustrate that if we are uncomfortable with the reasoning to solve a mathematical problem , even using the most elementary mathematics and probability theory, then we show ourselves to be victims of "innumeracy." Paolos does not provide a solution to correct the problem. This is however a charming collection of examples which point out the consequences of "innumeracy."



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