The Two Cultures Reading Schedule

By Chris Mooney | April 13, 2009 11:47 am

two-cultures.jpg[This is the first in a series of posts written in anticipation of the May 9 “Two Cultures” conference at the New York Academy of Sciences, which we helped organize.]

So: I’ve decided to do this C.P. Snow blogging thing. Here’s the plan:

Anyone who’s interested, get yourself a copy of The Two Cultures. The lecture is less than 50 pages long, so it’s not like it’s a ton of work to read or anything. And (the joke is getting old) there are no equations!

We recommend the following edition, pictured at left: Cambridge/Canto, 1993 paperback. There is a spectacularly good opening essay by Stefan Collini, and then there’s also Snow’s 1963 essay “The Two Cultures: A Second Look” included at the back. These are great additional readings, though on the blog here we’ll only focus on the original lecture.

Here’s the schedule: We’re going to take a week to allow everyone to get, in hand, a copy. Then, blogging about the book will begin the week of April 20. We’ll divide the text up into three sections, and we’ll devote a week to each. So it will go like this:

Week of April 20: Part I, “The two cultures,” p. 1-21.
Week of April 27: Part II-III, “Intellectuals as natural Luddites”; “The Scientific Revolution,” p. 22-40.
Week of May 4: Part IV, “The rich and the poor,” p. 41-51.

Clearly, then, this will be a close readings. So: get your books, and start your engines…


Comments (4)

  1. Jon Winsor

    Just a heads up: The Kindle version has about 3 pages that are garbled.

  2. Excellent plan. Since he does talk about it, I wish Snow that one equation in there:

    S = k ln W



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About Chris Mooney

Chris is a science and political journalist and commentator and the author of three books, including the New York Times bestselling The Republican War on Science--dubbed "a landmark in contemporary political reporting" by and a "well-researched, closely argued and amply referenced indictment of the right wing's assault on science and scientists" by Scientific American--Storm World, and Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future, co-authored by Sheril Kirshenbaum. They also write "The Intersection" blog together for Discover blogs.For a longer bio and contact information, see here.


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