MATHEMATICAL FICTION:

a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

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Rithmatic (2015)
B.J. Novak
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A school principal secretly proposes to his students that they all just agree not to bother with math in school:

(quoted from Rithmatic)

“Now do I wish you all knew math? Were great at math? Were f---ing mathematicians? Of course! It’d be better. But not much better, listen to me. Not so much better that it’s worth turning eight years of potential heaven – wait, nine? K-one-two-three-four-five-six-seven-eight, yeah, nine” – he wasn’t, as was becoming clear, much of a math guy – “nine years of heaven of just reading books and jotting down your thoughts about them – it’s just not worth turning nine years of heaven into nine years of hell. You’ll get to high school, and you’ll be behind in math, fine. But probably not that far – the other schools in this town are sh--, let’s be honest.”

In some ways, this is more like an extended joke (from an author more famous for his stand-up routines than his writing), but I've decided to list it here anyway.

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(Note: This is just one work of mathematical fiction from the list. To see the entire list or to see more works of mathematical fiction, return to the Homepage.)

Works Similar to Rithmatic
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. A Deprogrammer's Tale by Colin Adams
  2. Robbins v. New York by Colin Adams
  3. Mathematically Bent by Colin Adams
  4. The Mathematics of Being Human by Michelle Osherow / Manil Suri
  5. The Zero Theorem by Pat Rushin (screenplay) / Terry Gilliam (director)
  6. G103 by Oliver Tearne (director)
  7. Victoria Martin: Math Team Queen by Kathryn Walat (playwright)
  8. Odds Against Tomorrow by Nathaniel Rich
  9. The Idiot by Elif Batuman
  10. Mathematics of the Heart by Kefi Chadwick (playwright) / Donnacadh O’Briain (director)
Ratings for Rithmatic:
RatingsHave you seen/read this work of mathematical fiction? Then click here to enter your own votes on its mathematical content and literary quality or send me comments to post on this Webpage.
Mathematical Content:
3/5 (1 votes)
..
Literary Quality:
2/5 (1 votes)
..

Categories:
GenreHumorous,
MotifMath as Cold/Dry/Useless, Math Education,
Topic
MediumShort Stories,

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(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)