and binary opposites, science/art; logic/intuition?
In "The Trickster and the Paranormal", George Hansen talks about a fuzzy
middle ground, "Betwixt and Between", liminality, the concept of
anti-structuralism, where risk and experiment may foster and ferment and
how structural systems inhibit certain types of thinking and
experimentation (specifically with regard to the paranormal).
"Our culture is rationalised; it prefers sharp distinctions and clear
However it is the maverick, the polymath that innovates, challenging the
structures, the status quo, crossing boundaries, the Hermetic influence
upon the self-preserving Apollonian structures of order and longevity.
Rather than a third way, is it more relevant to speak of a place
in-between, an uncomfortable uncategorical shifting dynamic, generating
creativity, speculation and the challenging of conventions.
Kevin Kelly suggested that the third culture is the nerd culture -
utilising technology for communication and creativity:
"The third culture creates new tools faster than new theories, because
tools lead to novel discoveries quicker than theories do. The third
culture has little respect for scientific credentials because while
credentials may imply greater understanding, they don't imply greater
innovation. The third culture will favour the irrational if it brings
options and possibilities, because new experiences trump rational proof."
I empathise with this idea of adhoc networks innovating forming cultures
spontaneously creating new forms and moving on, its the opposite of
traditional hierarchical academe and the institution, its
unconventional, exciting and dynamic!
roger malina wrote:
> I enjoyed your story about random generators on computers
> that in fact are pseudo random generators
> the conclusion of your story was
> ¨""That's the story. Its point is that students usually have no way to
> understand, let alone develop for themselves those transformations.
> But they do need them now. C.P. Snow would treat this more or less as
> a language problem. The two cultures cannot talk to each other. But I
> have come to believe, it is a matter of attitude. What do you expect
> and request from yourself!""
> Frieder Nake
> I think I agreee with your point= its what I call the burning issue problem.
> When you really need to do something you dont ask the question what
> university department teaches it, or which funding agency paid for it,
> you work with the people who have the expertise you need whether they
> have a phd or not or what profession they call themselves.
> But the problem is quite deep, because depending on the way you
> grow up, some things are natural and some things are really difficult;
> I was just reading Alan Lightman's book of essays " a sense of the
> mysterious" which is a great book on the two cultures debate
> ( there is an interesting interview of him on line
> Lightman re iterates a " wisdom" that i remember my father telling me
> as a kid= Alan Lightman makes the generalisation that there are
> a number of good examples of first rate scientists who went on to
> do good work in the arts and humanities, but there are almost
> no examples of people who started their careers as artists and then
> went on to make important discoveries in the sciences or engineering
> or mathematics
> If he is right= there is not only a matter of the attitude as you argue,
> or of language problems as you quote Snow, but that in fact the way
> we are trained as kids and young people actually changes your brain
> and the way that you perceive the world; Someone with a strong
> mathematical training as a young person, actually sees the world differently and
> thinks differently than a person trained and who worked as a poet or painter
> in their youth.
> Is this true ? is this "asymmetry" true between how the arts and the sciences
> as training affect a brain structure/cognition/perception differerence ?
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