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Diane Publishing Books
Calculating People: The Spread of Numeracy in Early America
Patricia Cline Cohen (au). In an entertaining & informative history of the birth of the American passion for numbers, Patricia Cline Cohen traces the development of numeracy from its origins in the Enlightenment to its flowering in the first half of the 19th century. She focuses on episodes that illustrate the growing skill & enthusiasm for numbers in the colonies & early republic, from the controversial inauguration of the census in Jamestown to the role played by “statistics” in politics & social reform. With a great command of narrative & a witty use of source material, Cohen reveals how numeracy profoundly shaped the character of society in the post-Revolutionary years & provides a wholly original perspective on an essential aspect of the American character.
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