Lewis Carroll and Math/Logic/Games/Puzzles
While he is known today primarily as an author, Lewis Carroll, or rather Charles Dodgson, was also a brilliant scholar. He taught math and logic to undergraduates at Christ Church, Oxford, for many years, at the same time he was creating fanciful stories to entertain children. He carved a unique place for himself in his field when he combined his two areas of expertise, writing entertaining scenarios for challenging math and logic problems, or turning the concepts into games, to make the learning easier, more enjoyable, and more lasting. While he did not produce any revelatory findings, many of his ideas and theories are still respected today, and his creative, user-friendly approach to learning remains fresh today. Current mathematical scholars around the globe are discovering a new appreciation for his contributions to the field.
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- Selected Bibliography
- A very short biography of Dodgson as Mathematician
- Biographical notes from a mathematician’s perspective
- Lewis Carroll in Numberland: A well-received recent biography, written by a contemporary mathematician and focusing on that aspect of Carroll’s life
- An interactive pillow problem (One of many insomnia-inspired problems)
- Sorites, a class of syllogism
- Rudy’s blog (A post about Carrollian syllogisms)
- Carroll’s Paradox (Or, “What the Tortoise Said to Achilles”)
- A contrariwise paradox
- What Would Lewis Carroll Say?
- “Lewis Carroll’s Visual Logic”, by Francine F. Abeles – article published Feb-2007 in ‘History and Philosophy of Logic’, Volume 28, ISsue 1, pp 1-17
- Computer Science and Why Science, Language, and Literature by Matthew Belmonte. Chapter 2 of this book contains a few instances of 19th-century abstract algebraic thought in Carroll’s works.
- Telescoping determinants
- Algorithm to find day of the week
- Search on “lewis carroll” at This Site for His Sum of Squares
- Obtuse Problem
- Cats and Rats Problem
- Euclidean Geometry and Architecture
- A Tangled Tale (scroll down to find 4 knots)
Games, Puzzles, and Riddles
- A mention of Carroll and tangrams
- Another puzzle
- A Carroll Code used in the book Red Shift
- American McGee’s Alice (violent tone)
- Alice: English in Wonderland (teaching English to Russian speakers)
- Alice Maze
- Alice in Virtual Reality