How could we count if we had no numbers The Incas used quipus as a sophisticated counting device to keep tally in the absence of a written number system. Mathematical ideas arise in many different cultural and historical contexts. Many of these ideas can be recast using contemporary Western mathematical theory. For example, Sona drawings of the Chokwe people of South Central Africa can be understood using graph theory. In this course students investigate selected cultural activities and practices (e.g., kin relations, symmetries in art, counting devices) as a way to explore contemporary mathematical topics (e.g., group theory, geometry, number systems). G. Coulombe.
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