C.P. Snow was a British chemist, novelist, and government official who gave a famous lecture, “The Two Cultures“, in 1959. The traditional literary culture is behaving like a state whose power is rapidly declining, standing on its precarious dignity.
Whereas the scientific culture is expansive, not restrictive, confident at the roots, certain that history is on its side. Impatient, intolerant, creative rather than critical, good-natured and brash. Neither culture knows the virtues of the other; often it seems they deliberately do not want to know.
Resentment traditional culture feels for scientific shaded with fear; for reverse, resentment not shaded but brimming with irritation. When scientists are faced with an expression of the traditional culture, it tends to make their feet ache.
@pmarca the positive and sceptical reactions to 'here's an amazing idea that'll change the world' are not limited to tech ideas—
Benedict Evans (@BenedictEvans) March 09, 2014
Snow then implores each culture to seek to understand and embrace the other to come together to improve the world. The same attitude is needed today. Read his entire essay here which is worth reading.
@pmarca subtle twist: Nature editorial a few years ago noted that Hollywood portrays scientists/math positively, engineers negatively—
Venkatesh Rao (@vgr) March 09, 2014