Condições de produção e legitimação da etnomatemática
Passos, Caroline Mendes dos
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How to map the research in ethnomathematics in Brazil? This was the initial question and the starting point for the constitution of the present study. To study the conditions of production and legitimization of ethnomathematics as a research area was the main objective pursued. The methodological orientation was situated in the field of sociology from a perspective that inaugurates ways of looking at aspects inherent to mathematical education. In the case of this investigation, we studied ethnomathematics. This is a way of looking, which, in this investigation, takes the sociological perspective proposed by Pierre Bourdieu (1930-2002) as a reference. Bourdieu was a French sociologist known and recognized for his boldness in the choice of objects for analysis, but, more than that, in the way he analyzed them, which took into account the relations, power games, accumulated capitals and alliances that were settled in a space of struggle. This space was characterized by him as the field. From this perspective, we come to understand ethnomathematics as a research issue that is constituted by studies and activities conducted by researchers who are involved with the theme and also as part of a process of constitution that favored its production. Thus, a part of the studies that we conducted involved an analysis of the emergence process of ethnomathematics as a research issue, from a perspective that focused on the historical aspects that favored the emergence of ethnomathematics as a research area and its relevance as a broader way to research mathematical education. Still on this emergence process, we focused on the trajectory of a main agent of this movement - the Brazilian researcher Ubiratan D'Ambrosio. He was an agent who, for the positions he occupies - which are associated with the capital he accumulated in his trajectory -, stood out as an important person in the institution of ethnomathematics as a research issue, introduced the term "ethnomathematics" in the academic setting, and formulated the principles that are the foundation of the area of studies. An agent who, in mobilizing strategies to promote this movement, also promoted his own movement in the field of mathematics. In the other part of our studies, the activities registered by ethnomathematical researchers in their Lattes resumes are understood as those that legitimize ethnomathematics. We considered legitimacy as a process involving production, dissemination, promotion, and circulation, and which constitutes the market where the discourse that establishes ethnomathematics as a practice circulates. A market that is established based on relations between producers and consumers. The processes that involved the production and legitimation of ethnomathematics as a research area were understood as led by the agents and constituted by their activities, which, when recorded in their Lattes resumes, convey what should or should not be understood as ethnomathematical practice. Such practices, considered to be discursive, are those formulated by the producing agents, the intellectual elite of research subjects, the ones who dictate the rules of the game and establish what should or should not be considered ethnomathematics.