Double Shift

What intrigues me most about Carroll as a writer is that he is not a writer at all.

His true profession is a mathematician, not a writer. How could a mathematician write a book that is so trivial and cryptic? He is no writer, his job involves numbers, which hardly show up in the book at all. Yet here is a book that everyone wants to read and decipher. It just shows how anyone can be anything, Carroll knew this. He was a man of numbers, who wrote a book of words and an odd landscape where everything was different. He changed previous notions about children’s stories, and brought in hidden messages to the adult readers. A mathematician did this; not an author.

Is it that hard to write a children’s story though?

I mean it would seem simple enough, but odds are it is quite a challenge. Yet in the whole scheme of things, it would be easiest to write a book for children. Carroll did not write a children’s story; he wrote for adults. Now, like my previous entry (“Lost, just like Alice”), the book could be either for adults or kids. I think that Carroll’s original plan was to write his book for kids, much like the Alice he wrote it for. Then as he began writing it, he himself grew bored of writing it. To intrigue him, he slipped in little messages, which is why the annotations seem to be so far fetched and odd. Carroll had math in his annotations, so it is hard to understand for us non-mathematicians, Then Carroll began to enjoy his book, and that is how his book evolved into what it is today. I have no facts to prove my theory, but that is how I believe the book became what it is today; confusing and odd.

Carroll did something through his work that not many authors could do. His other job showed us that we all can be one thing, but it is the other things we do outside the one thing, that really matter

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Published in: on December 1, 2009 at 10:22  Comments (2)  

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  1. This is an interesting idea to play with. How can a mathematician write a wonderful story riddled with hidden meanings and puns? He is a man of number, although why can’t he be a man of words too? This is not his only book. He has written several other books and he has also had a number of his articles published. He is both a mathematician and an author, but this is very unusual. As for how the story was written, he had to include adult themes to intrigue the older generation. Who would be reading this book? Would the children be reading this book to themselves? I think not. The parents would be reading this book to their children as a fascinating bed time story, thus Carroll had to include more advanced topics to keep them interested as well.

  2. Wow! I never thought of Carroll in that way and it is a possibility that he could have written this for adults instead of little Alice. I agree that writing a children’s story is difficult. Actually for my LOTF project I created a children’s version of the book. It’s hiding somewhere in Mr. Long’s room but if you are curious you could ask him and read it. Of course it depends on the audience you are trying to write too. For Carroll, from his writing styles, he seems like he was writing for both adults and children. Although we will probably never know.


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