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Abstract

For many years, learning the competences to teach mathematics in early education at university has been associated with the ability to reproductively apply methodological guidelines. Currently, however, the need to not only understand the mathematical meanings given by teachers, but also students of the specialty, are seen to be important. This article attempts to engage in an interpretive line of thinking with regard to mathematics education, coming from the perspective of students learning to be early education teachers. Their understanding of the contexts for learning mathematical concepts, as well as their sensitivity to the processes of constructing mathematical knowledge by very young pupils, being a way of predicting what educational activities will be undertaken in the classroom in the future. This text is the result of qualitative analyses of written essays of early education students, where respondents had to make conceptualizations of their beliefs by justifying the selection of particular declarative statements. Students’ mathematical meanings were also uncovered in their strategies for solving mathematical problems for very young pupils. Moreover, the results of this analyses provides a context for reading the students’ understanding of mathematics learning processes.
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Abstract

The debate between Ludwik Fleck (microbiologist and philosopher of science) and Tadeusz Bilikiewicz (historian and philosopher of medicine) took place shortly before the outbreak of World War II and remained virtually unnoticed until 1978. A wider recognition of their exchange was possible only after the English and German translations appeared. Basically, the polemics concerned understanding of the concept of style and influence that the environment exerted on scientific activity and its products. The polemic started with the review of Bilikiewicz’s book Die Embryologie im Zeitalter des Barock und des Rokoko (1932) where the historical account of the development of embryology in the early and late Baroque period was interwoven with bold sociological remarks. The commentators of the debate were quick to notice that the claims made by Fleck at that time were crucial for understanding of his position, especially because they let to interpret his views in a non-relativist way. While the importance of the controversy was univocally acknowledged, its assessment so far has been defective for two reasons. First, for decades the views of Bilikiewicz were known only from the short and rather critical presentation given by Fleck and this put their discussion into an inadequate perspective. Second, for over 40 years it remained a complete puzzle what prompted their exchange of views. This paper closes these gaps. Thus, on the one hand, I reconstruct the central issue of the disputation between Fleck and Bilikiewicz and situate it within the context of Bilikiewicz’s views. On the other hand – and this is more important – I try to explain the origin of their debate by quoting some recently discovered and unpublished archival materials. A review of their correspondence gives me an opportunity to advance some hypotheses about the aims and hopes connected with their project but also possible reasons for its failure.
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Abstract

The avant-garde is synonymous with the concept of New Art, the breakthrough in art which took place in the visual arts during the first decades of the 20th century in Russia and then in the USSR. Its representatives, determined by the changes brought about by new technical inventions, especially in the sphere of urbanization, were convinced, like the Italian futurists, that they would be at the foreground of social change, new perceptions and shaping of culture. They believed in the new society which would rend apart the class structure of previous ages when its place would be taken by dynamism and creativity in the service of utilitarian and egalitarian solutions. They believed in their mission, the Promethean idea of a new better world, when man- kind would be liberated from all subjection. This social mood was developing in the whole of Europe, but was particularly strong in Russian society in the last twenty years before World War I. In fact, one could say it was a prelude to the war. From this sequence of events came the conviction held by represen- tatives of New Art about their prophetic message of freedom. The actual reality, the advance of totalitarianism, was a bitter epilogue for the whole formation, for almost all the great artists of the avant-garde. Nevertheless, though rejected and often dying before their time, their works remained, suffused with enthusiasm for the new gravitation – belief in the greatness of mankind – in the new, universal idea.
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