Land Of The Rising Sums

Alex Bellos visits Japan to look at the perception of Asian cultures seeming to be so much better at maths than many Western countries.

Alex looks at the cultural difference in the Japanese approach to numbers and asks whether there is something fundamental in Japanese culture that keeps them at the upper end of international numeracy league tables. He explores the language used to describe numbers themselves, the songs taught in schools to teach children their times tables, and the passion the Japanese still show for the ancient but foolproof abacus, even in the computer age. He also meets the godfather of Sudoku.

Presenter/Alex Bellos, Producer/Alexandra Feachem for the BBC

BBC Radio 4 Publicity

Monday 29 October



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