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“Literature’s Greatest Opening Lines as Written by Mathematicians” Review by Dana

This article points out how great authors have a way with their words. Sentences that could be written in maybe four or five words or in simpler notation are turned into elaborated phrases that makes the reader’s mind think critically. This is not to disregard that the article most definitely has a more humorous take on this.

In A Tale of Two Cities, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”

A mathematician would think of an equation or a statistic that reaches two different peaks, ending up with a translated quote of, “The times were high-variance.”

In Peter Pan, “All children, except one, grow up,” very well indicating that it was only Peter Pan who was the exception.

The mathematician was just trying to be smart when the translation came out to be, “Not all children grow up.” Technically, this theory is not wrong and would give the book a whole new interpretation.

My favorite one was the opening line in Pride and Prejudice, “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”

This was then translated to “Theorem: Wealthy bachelors are lonely.” Approaching this as a mathematical proof was quite a different way to go about it. They also added a sense of humor into the statement.

As a left-brained as well as a sarcastic human being, I can relate to this mathematician’s take on literature and interpretation. Not necessarily being right or wrong, it is a different approach to literature than how tradition has it.

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