All literature explained in graphs

All of literature is explained, or not, in simple graphs, in this essay by Kurt Vonnegut, the younger brother of Ig Nobel Prize winner (for monography “Chicken Plucking as Measure of Tornado Wind Speed.”) Bernie Vonnegut. It begins:

Kurt Vonnegut at the Blackboard

I want to share with you something I’ve learned. I’ll draw it on the blackboard behind me so you can follow more easily [draws a vertical line on the blackboard]. This is the G-I axis: good fortune-ill fortune. Death and terrible poverty, sickness down here—great prosperity, wonderful health up there. Your average state of affairs here in the middle [points to bottom, top, and middle of line respectively].

This is the B-E axis. B for beginning, E for entropy. Okay. Not every story has that very simple, very pretty shape that even a computer can understand [draws horizontal line extending from middle of G-I axis]….

(Thanks to investigator Paige Williams for bringing this to our attention.)

Improbable Research