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Educational Studies in Mathematics

, Volume 24, Issue 2, pp 139–162 | Cite as

The theory of figural concepts

  • Efraim Fischbein
Article

Abstract

The main thesis of the present paper is that geometry deals with mental entities (the so-called geometrical figures) which possess simultaneously conceptual and figural characters. A geometrical sphere, for instance, is an abstract ideal, formally determinable entity, like every genuine concept. At the same time, it possesses figural properties, first of all a certain shape. The ideality, the absolute perfection of a geometrical sphere cannot be found in reality. In this symbiosis between concept and figure, as it is revealed in geometrical entities, it is the image component which stimulates new directions of thought, but there are the logical, conceptual constraints which control the formal rigour of the process. We have called the geometrical figuresfigural concepts because of their double nature. The paper analyzes the internal tensions which may appear in figural concepts because of this double nature, development aspects and didactical implications.

Keywords

Geometrical Figure Figural Property Development Aspect Image Component Internal Tension 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Efraim Fischbein
    • 1
  1. 1.School of EducationTel-Aviv UniversityRamat AvivIsrael

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