Throughout the book, the writer replaced the number "1" with an "I", but only on the chapter and page number. Why is this? At first I thought it was only relevant to his name,...

Throughout the book, the writer replaced the number "1" with an "I", but only on the chapter and page number. Why is this?

At first I thought it was only relevant to his name, Pi, but I soon realized that "I" has nothing to do with his name besides the fact that it's the last letter and that the name has a lower-case "I" and not an upper case one. I soon looked in Sparknotes to see what they had to say about it, but it seemed that they had not looked into it. The only thing that Sparknotes had that could have meant something was the fact that Pi is a letter in the Greek alphabet, but "I" is a Roman numeral, not a letter in the Greek alphabet. You can see how this has been bugging me, I've been trying to track down what this means, if it means anything!

Asked on by comrade

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linda-allen's profile pic

linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted on

You have a good eye for detail. It's probably a quirk of the typeface that was chosen for the book. I used to be a copy editor for a major publishing company, and it would always frustrate me when the designer chose an unusual typeface for the book. The ones I dislike most are those that make the question mark look like a weird squiggle. Experiment with the fonts on your PC and see if any of them use an I for the 1.

daedalic's profile pic

daedalic | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

Well, I have to say, I never paid too much attention about the "o"s and "I"s. I actually thought that it's the typeface's style. Anyway, I can try to explain the "I"s like this: "1" in the book, refers to God, or gods, and religion. The three different religions mentioned worship different gods but they all come down to one center belief of love in god and the world. Religion is in itself also a kind of way for men to relate themselves with the world. So, hence from changing "1" to "I", is the gesture of relating religion to oneself.

But on second thoughts, what I just did is probably an overanalysis (XDDD) so you can just delete it from your memory.

comrade's profile pic

comrade | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

I thought about that too, but I soo searched through the entire book and found that anywhere else but the chapter and page number had the real "1"! It's driving me crazy lol. I have also come to notice that the number "0" is replaced with a lower case "o". I'm pretty sure that is means something, or maybe not, but knowing this book I have a feeling that it means something, whether it's big or small. I have no idea.

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