It has been said that pragmatism’s “merely instrumental” truths fail to motivate radical change whereas absolute ideals make excellent guiding and driving forces for justice. However, in Radical Equations: Math Literacy and Civil Rights, Robert Moses speaks of the radical success of pragmatic principles, used in the Civil Rights Movement, that are continued today in the Algebra Project. This paper applies Dewey’s claims about education and community to Moses’s own arguments as a means of depicting the role that pragmatic ideals play in achieving radical social change.

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