Abstract / Synopsis
Parenting, across species, is a clumsy, all-consuming, and often exasperating endeavor. Yet in many parts of the human world, we somehow expect to contain and control this part of ourselves. We idealize the separation of work and family. This seems to be especially true in mathematics where many of us hold space in our minds for the Devoted Genius Mathematician who has no other responsibilities but to their own passions, and no obstacles beyond the difficulties of their own pursuits. The unavoidable fact is that life with children is full of absurdities and contradictions. Unless we're willing to embrace that, we will continue to put mothers and other marginalized parents in impossible situations. Instead of viewing contradiction as the end of the proof/story, we need to see it as the beginning.
Piper Harron, "On Contradiction," Journal of Humanistic Mathematics, Volume 8 Issue 2 (July 2018), pages 199-207. DOI: 10.5642/jhummath.201802.22. Available at: https://scholarship.claremont.edu/jhm/vol8/iss2/22