Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What's your paradigm?

I went to an interesting lecture last week by famous journalist Chris Mooney. One of the things he mentioned was C.P. Snow's influential 1959 lecture "The Two Cultures" and subsequent book The Two Cultures and the Scientific Revolution. Snow claimed modern society has two different cultures, sciences versus humanities, and their lack of commonalities was a hindrance to solving the world's problems. One of Mooney's points was our society is still grappling with some of these same issues.

Unfortunately, as a writer, I also seem to be dealing with a kind of rationality versus creativity dichotomy. One of my professors said recently I was too rational and needed to be more personal in my writing. My kneejerk reaction was, how can you be too rational? And I've worked hard to train my brain to be rational. But upon reflection, I realize fiction is about people/emotions and not about data, so I may need to revisit my paradigm. Ugh.

How about you? Are you more of a rational scientist or a creative humanist?

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