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Generic examples: Seeing the general in the particular
 John Mason,
 David Pimm
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This paper explores some of the ambiguities inherent in the notions of generality and genericity, drawing parallels between natural language and mathematics, and thereby obliquely attacking the entrenched view that mathematics is unambiguous. Alternative ways of construing 2N, for example, suggest approaches to some of the difficulties which students find with an algebraic representation of generality. Examples are given to show that confusion of levels is widespread throughout mathematics, but that the very confusion is a source of richness of meaning.
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 Title
 Generic examples: Seeing the general in the particular
 Journal

Educational Studies in Mathematics
Volume 15, Issue 3 , pp 277289
 Cover Date
 19840801
 DOI
 10.1007/BF00312078
 Print ISSN
 00131954
 Online ISSN
 15730816
 Publisher
 Kluwer Academic Publishers
 Additional Links
 Authors

 John Mason ^{(1)}
 David Pimm ^{(1)}
 Author Affiliations

 1. Centre for Maths Education, The Open University, Walton Hall, MK7 6AA, Milton Keynes, England