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# Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences (page 2)

By L.C. Edwards|K.M. Bayless|M.E. Ramsey
Pearson Allyn Bacon Prentice Hall

### Logical-Mathematical Intelligence

Mathematicians, scientists, and composers certainly have this form of intelligence, which involves a sensitivity to and a capacity to discern logical or numerical patterns (including rhythm, meter, time signature, and note value) and the ability to handle long chains of reasoning. Some examples of people who demonstrate highly developed logical-mathematical intelligence include Johann Sebastian Bach, scientists Albert Einstein and Madame Curie, biologist Ernest Everett Just, and botanist George Washington Carver. The capacity to explore patterns, categories, and relationships can be heard in the four-part harmony and counterpoint music from the baroque period.

An example of logical-mathematical intelligence in composers is revealed in Bach’s colossal work, The Art of Fugue, often referred to as a transmission of a purely abstract theory. In any case, The Art of Fugue is an excellent example of logical-mathematical intelligence, carrying pure counterpoint to its height. Read the following description of The Art of Fugue, and you may agree that Bach’s work is as complex as any mathematical problem you have ever tried to solve.

It starts with four fugues, two of which present the theme, the others presenting the theme in contrary motion (that is, back to front). Then there are counter fugues, in which the original subject is inverted (turned upside down) and combined with the original. There are double and triple fugues, several canons, three pairs of mirror fugues. To make the mirror reflection doubly realistic, the treble of the first fugue becomes the bass of the second fugue, the alto changes into a tenor, the tenor into an alto, and the bass into a treble, with the result that No. 12:2 appears like 12:1 standing on its head. (Schonberg, 1981, p. 43)

Certainly, few readers will understand what all of that means, but it does make a good case for including logical-mathematical intelligence in this chapter on music and movement!

The concept of musical, bodily-kinesthetic, and logical-mathematical intelligences suggests that our ability to produce and appreciate rhythm, pitch, and timbre while appreciating the many forms of musical expression and our ability to use our bodies and to handle objects skillfully deserve to be nourished so that we can function at our fullest potential as human beings. According to Gardner, our success as adults in musical, bodily-kinesthetic, and logical-mathematical competency may have been helped or hindered by experiences during our early childhood years. Gardner challenges educators to recognize these separate intelligences and to nurture them as universal intelligences that serve important functions in children’s cognitive, affective, social, and physical development.

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