Third Culture

Beyond the Scientific Revolution

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Thirty-five years ago, C. P. Snow, in a now famous essay, wrote about the polarization of the "two cultures" -- literary intellectuals on the one hand, and scientists on the other. Although he hoped for the emergence of a "third culture" that would bridge the gap, it is only recently that science has changed the intellectual landscape.
Brockman's thesis that science is emerging as the intellectual center of our society is brought to life vividly in The Third Culture, which weaves together the voices of some of today's most influential scientific figures, including:
Stephen Jay Gould and Richard Dawkins on the implications of evolution Steven Pinker, Marvin Minsky, Daniel C. Dennett, and Roger Penrose on how the mind works
Murray Gell-Mann and Stuart Kauffman on the new sciences of complexity
The Third Culture is an honest picture of science in action. It is at once stimulating, challenging, and riveting.
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  • Touchstone | 
  • 416 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780684823447 | 
  • May 1996
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1

GEORGE C. WILLIAMS

"A Package of Information"

Niles Eldredge: I remember the English evolutionary geneticist John Maynard Smith remarking to me that he was astonished to find out that George Williams wasn't in our National Academy. Williams finally got elected in 1993. When I visited him in Stony Brook in the mid-1980s, he told me he was having a hard time getting grant support for his research, and I couldn't believe that. The two thoughts converged, because George really is the most important thinker in evolutionary biology in the United States since the 1959 Darwin centennial.... see more

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