The Math People: Unwitting Agents of Empire Who “Like to Stay in Their Lane”

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    Mr. Dooley (or Martin J. Dooley) was a fictional Irish immigrant bartender created by Chicago Times journalist Peter Dunne and the subject of many of Dunne’s columns between 1893–1915 and 1924–1926 (Wikipedia, n.d.).

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    One of my favourite graduate students, upon hearing of my adventures while we were debriefing at an Irish pub, said, “well Dr. M., that would have been like asking, ‘how many people are breathing in this room.” “Bill,” I said, “thank you for punctuating my point.”

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    Professor Wright would never ever refer to himself as an ally. This, paradoxically, contains the very reason why he is an ally. I name him such; he would never name himself this and likely would even show discerning humility and self-effacing, good humour in this regard: “I am only trying to help In a good way Michael” he might say. This is what our Elders say also—same exact words!

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    At my university, Indigenizing means most simply to be responsive and responsible to Indigenous peoples’ goals of self-determination and well-being.

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    Local is a term that is used in Indigenous education following the release of the watershed document Indian Control of Indian Education (1972) ( ) published by the Assembly of First Nations (then called the National Indian Brotherhood). The document was a strong national call for “local control” of education by Indigenous leaders and educators. The AFN has published a revised version in 2010 called First Nations Control of First Nations Education.


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Correspondence to Michael Marker.

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Marker, M., Hardman, S.A. The Math People: Unwitting Agents of Empire Who “Like to Stay in Their Lane”. Can. J. Sci. Math. Techn. Educ. 20, 288–296 (2020).

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