Edge in the News: 2016

Media Inaf [10.19.16]

To reflect on the contrast between scientific and humanistic culture is Anna Curir, associated INAF Astrophysical Observatory of Turin, just in the bookstore with L’emergere della Terza Cultura e la mutazione letalehe (The Emergence of the Third Culture and Lethal Mutation), published by Sirente. An essay that moves transversely between the metaphors with which Richard Dawkins is the Darwinian evolution and suggestions of Wilfred Bion, Ernst Mayr and Noam Chomsky to suggest how intelligence and culture can become either a lethal mutation (the same one that gives title to the book) or a strategy to survive a sparkling contemporary and rapidly evolving. The choice between these two alternatives depends exclusively "by becoming aware that the act is different from doing."

It was perhaps John Brockman who was the first to define the third culture as that produced by scientists and philosophers contemporaries who had in fact supplanted the traditional figure of the intellectual in rendering visible the deeper aspects of human existence, redefining who and what we are.