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A Mathematician’s Apology

“Judged by all practical standards, the value of my mathematical life is nil; and outside mathematics it is trivial anyhow. I have just one chance of escaping a verdict of triviality, that I may be judged to have created something … Continue reading

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Angela’s Ashes

I don’t know what it means and I don’t care because it’s Shakespeare and it’s like having jewels in my mouth when I say the words. I say, Billy, what’s the use in playing croquet when you’re doomed? He says, … Continue reading

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All Quiet on the Western Front

“But what I like to know,” says Albert, “is whether there would not have been a war if the Kaiser had said No … Well, if not him alone, then perhaps if twenty or thirty people in the world had … Continue reading

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King Solomon’s Ring

The creative writer, in depicting an animal’s behaviour, is under no great obligation to keep within the bounds of exact truth than is the painter or the sculptor in shaping an animal’s likeness. But   all three artists must regard … Continue reading

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In the Mountains

There is the oddest lot of books in this house, pitchforked together by circumstances, and sometimes their accidental rearrangement by Antoine after cleaning their shelves each spring of my absence would make their writers, if they could know, curdle between … Continue reading

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American Gods

Fiction allows us to slide into these other heads, these other places, and look out through other eyes. And then in the tale we stop before we die, or we die vicariously and unharmed, and in the world beyond the … Continue reading

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Diary of a teacher

There is always a gap between what the students think they know, and what they actually know. Take the self-reported background knowledge with a big pinch of salt.  Your starting point should be a good 1 mile back from the … Continue reading

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