List Item: Read half of the 1001 Comics You Must Read Before You Die
Progress: 104/501Title: Logicomix: An Epic Search For Truth
Creator(s): Apostolos Doxiadis, Christos Papadimitriou and Alecos Papadatos
Graphic novels are a great way to tell stories about history, especially one where graphical representations are going to only help it. So, Logicomix which is meant to be an exploration of the concept of ‘logic’ via the framing narrative by logician Bertrand Russell (itself framed in a meta narrative of the people writing it) you think that there is going to be a lot that can be taken from this. I’m not actually sure how much I actually did.
First things first, the meta-narrative is ultimately meaningless and it really disrupted the flow of the main narrative. Like, sometimes it is interesting to peer behind the curtain of the writing process and who they got as consultants, but in Logicomix it so often came across as self-indulgent. Then you have the main narrative itself which, ultimately, is about a man’s work that seemingly peaks and then is washed away.
There are hints of greater and more interesting stories here, like how so many logicians and their progeny end up succumbing to some form of madness. Like how the World Wars shaped the path of mathematics and logic to the point where we ended up with computers via Alan Turing (who gets a passing mention). Instead we have a biography of Russell where, thanks to a Wikipedia dive, I know some liberties were taken.
So at the end of reading this, I just don’t know what I got out of this. It was interesting to see a path of logic research live and die, but there was more I wish I could have found out that was outside the scope the writer set themselves. Oh well.