a list compiled by Alex Kasman (College of Charleston)

Home All New Browse Search About

A Deprogrammer's Tale (2000)
Colin Adams
(click on names to see more mathematical fiction by the same author)
Note: This work of mathematical fiction is recommended by Alex for math majors, math grad students (and maybe even math professors).

This spoof presents the attempts of math professors to convince students to become math majors and the subsequent interest of those students in math as if it were a religious cult. Told from the point of view of a ``deprogrammer'' hired by families to save their children from the horrible fate of getting a degree in math. Of course, since the author is himself a math professor, he does not really mean this as it sounds, and any math department insiders will see this story as being positive (and funny). In fact, I've distributed copies to some of the math majors in our own department.

Originally published as Mathematical Intelligencer ,Vol. 23, No. 4, 2001, 13-14 and then also printed in the 2009 collection Riot at the Calc Exam....

More information about this work can be found at another page on this Website.
(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 A Deprogrammer's Tale
According to my `secret formula', the following works of mathematical fiction are similar to this one:
  1. I Had to Call In a Mathematician by Erik Talvila
  2. Rithmatic by B.J. Novak
  3. Rumpled Stiltskin by Colin Adams
  4. A Proof of God by Colin Adams
  5. Arithmetic Town / Arithmetic by Todd McEwen
  6. Do Androids Dream of Symmetric Sheaves?: And Other Mathematically Bent Stories by Colin Adams
  7. Mangum, P.I. by Colin Adams
  8. Mathematically Bent by Colin Adams
  9. The Mirror Has Two Faces by Barbra Streisand (director) / Richard LaGravenese (Writer)
  10. Into Thin Air by Colin Adams
Ratings for A Deprogrammer's Tale:
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:
5/5 (2 votes)
Literary Quality:
3/5 (2 votes)

MotifAcademia, Math Education,
MediumShort Stories,

Home All New Browse Search About

Exciting News: The 1,600th entry was recently added to this database of mathematical fiction! Also, for those of you interested in non-fictional math books let me (shamelessly) plug the recent release of the second edition of my soliton theory textbook.

(Maintained by Alex Kasman, College of Charleston)