(FCSH, Universidade Nova de Lisboa)
Paper Short Abstract:
The paper reconsiders Snow's "Two Cultures" thesis. It will focus (1) on the historical interactions between these two knowledge networks and (2) on Snow's view of the gap between a universal, international and progressive endeavour like Science, and a parochial, national and conservative Culture.
Paper long abstract:
C. P. Snow's bipolar thesis of the "Two Cultures", and above all his apology for a scientific turn in education, found a fertile ground to flourish in the Post-World War era. Not surprisingly, as World War II had been won in a Physics Lab, rather than in the classical battlefield.
The paper will reconsider Snow's thesis from a historical point of view. It will trace the tensions and dialectical interactions between these two networks of knowledge from the late-18th century to the mid-20th century focusing mainly on one of the premises that underlies Snow's arguments: the gap between a universal, international and progressive endeavour like Science, and a parochial, national and conservative Culture, which, according to Snow, is at the very base of the Humanities.
Closing the door on globalization: cultural nationalism and scientific internationalism in the 19th and 20th centuries