The Two Cultures of Cities

  • Juval PortugaliEmail author
Part of the Understanding Complex Systems book series (UCS)


One of the most famous observations in the history of science is Snow’s thesis about The Two Cultures – the culture of the sciences and scientists and the culture of the arts, humanities and the “literary intellectuals” as Snow referred to the proponents of this second culture. According to Snow the breakdown of communication between the “two cultures” is a major hindrance to solving the world’s problems. C. P. Snow – a British scientist and novelist – delivered this thesis on May 7, 1959, as the Rade Lecture in the Senate House, at the University of Cambridge, England. The thesis was reformulated and extended by him a few years later in his The Two Cultures and a Second Look (Snow 1964). “It is hard to see”, writes Yee in a review to a 1993 new addition of Snow’s The Two Cultures, “why quite such a fuss was made over Snow’s lecture at the time; as he himself was the first to admit … [that] nothing he said was particularly original” (Yee 1993).


Social Theory Complexity Theory Scientific Revolution Urban Study Major Hindrance 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dept. of Geography and the Human EnvironmentTel Aviv UniversityTel AvivIsrael

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