Accountants & Literature

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The latest Student Accountant of ACCA had a story about an interesting survey of reading habits of accountants:

According to a survey conducted on World Book Day last year, accountants read more for pleasure than many other professionals. It was estimated that accountants spend an average of more than five hours per week reading their favourite choices. Five hours may not sound much, but in the modern busy world it represents quite an investment of time to devote to reading � certainly more than the MPs, journalists and teachers surveyed were able to put in�..More intriguing, it turned out that humorous literature was very popular with the profession, together with fantasy novels such as those of J R R Tolkein...

About 35% of accountants surveyed admitted to liking crime fiction. One of the greatest writers of such fiction in the 19th century, Charles Dickens, gave accountancy mixed treatment. As the son of a father who had very poor money management skills, was chronically in debt and even imprisoned for his failure to pay up, Dickens had no great love for financial contracts, loans, taxes and indebtedness of all kinds. Frankly, it embarrassed and worried him. Perhaps for this reason some of those characters who record financial information, or show too great an interest in money, are not very attractive either physically or in behaviour. The exception to this negative image is Bob Cratchett in A Christmas Carol. Cratchett is the perfect and modest bookkeeper who scratches away busily with his pen in a ledger (you had to have a large thick ledger book in the 19th century to be taken seriously), keeping a faithful account of Mr Scrooge�s transactions while managing to remain unperturbed by the harsh treatment he receives from this classic employer from hell�. Truth is always stranger than fiction as they say, and if any of the 19% of accountants who admitted to liking biography were reading the story of Al Capone.

1 Comment

Heh. My husband, an engineer who loves sci-fi and fantasy, has been talking about a career change and becoming an accountant. Very cool post!

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This page contains a single entry by Paul published on January 31, 2005 11:13 AM.

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