Subscribing to mindful performativity as a methodology, I have unpacked the problematic nature of reductionism as a key obstacle towards developing mathematics education in Nepal as an inclusive, agentic and meaning-centred enterprise of learning. Oftentimes, reductionism in mathematics education has been conceived as a tendency to reduce whole into parts, thereby studying them in isolation via the assumption that parts represent the whole. In the process, two cultural-intellectual traditions – performativity and mindfulness – have enabled me to explore meanings of reductionism as ideology, methodology, logic and history via narrative, poetic, reflective and narrative genres. More so, the chapter also portrays my inquiry into types of reductionism – systemic, curricular, pedagogic, and evaluative – widespread in Nepali mathematics education, thereby embodying different forms of research logics, such as dialectical and metaphorical.
The proposed chapter begins with illustrating how we have termed the Nepali society, and the education system adopted by it, as transitional on the basis of an unstable political system, cultural fluidity, changing economic policies and practices and the growing import of new technologies. With more focus on narrative genre of representation, we shall explore and critique the existing classroom micropolitics in accordance with the notion that Nepal should embrace a critical mathematics education perspective that upholds cultural pluralism and a strong democratic ethos by adopting ethics of communication that promote: (a) respect for the individual learner as a meaning maker and stakeholder in the future of both local and global societies and (b) good social dynamics for negotiating the construction of meaning and promoting critical literacy. Drawing on socio-cultural and public educational perspectives, we shall explore some practical ways to promote the cultural contextualisation of mathematics that can contribute to the development of a sustainable mathematics education program for the primary and secondary schools in Nepal.