In Victoria Vesna’s, “Toward a Third Culture: Being in Between”, there is a depiction of the development and the need for a third culture, a bridge between science and the arts. She mentions CP Snow, who coined the idea of two cultures, and his desire to close that gap. As a cognitive science major, I found the concept of a third culture, quite relevant and realized my major was a part of this third culture.
|Various fields of Cognitive Science|
Cognitive Science is an inter-disciplinary and explores the mind through various fields. However, many of my peers and students at my campus are not allowed the same flexibility.
I think this separation is evident on most college campuses in the way they have their education system requirements. For example, as a student at UC Berkeley, we are required to take Breadth classes, Reading and Composition, American Cultures, in addition to major requirements. Other than those few classes, one student could “get away” with taking classes only in one field such as only in the arts or only in science. Rather than seeing both fields as opposing, I think it is important that the arts and science work hand in hand and are different aspects to one entity. I understand the importance of exploring a topic, specifically the mind, through various lenses. This multi approach allows a more thorough understanding.
While reading about the idea of a third culture, the in between of the two cultures of science and the arts, I couldn’t help but apply this concept to my being raised as a Korean American. I grew up exposed to two cultures and always thought of the two as distinct and separate. And by questioning of traditions and social cues embedded within each culture, I was able to recognize I was a product of the two cultures and why I hold certain values.
|Heart vs. Mind|
In the same way, I also am encouraged to explore the idea of grappling between emotions and thoughts. We are taught to view emotions, represented by the heart, as fleeting and with no logical basis while thoughts, represented by the brain, are considered logical. Parallel to the idea of bridging the gap between the arts and sciences, I think it would be exciting to bridge the gap and study the relation between emotions and thoughts, considering them both crucial and equally valid in decision making.
Snow, C. P. The Two Cultures and the Scientific Revolution. New York: Cambridge UP, 1959. Print.
Syal, Meera. “Growing up between Cultures is Tough – until You Realise It’s a Creative Blessing | Meera Syal.” The Guardian. Guardian News and Media, 24 Mar. 2015. Web. 26 June 2016.
Kelly, Kevin. "The Third Culture." Science. American Association for the Advancement of Science, n.d. Web. 26 June 2016
Vesna, Victoria. “Toward a Third Culture: Being in Between.” Leonardo 34.2 (2001): 121-25. Web.
George, Lynell. "Children of Immigrants Often Torn Between Two Cultures : Assimilation: As Parents Continue to Bring Their Families' Hopes and Expectations to the United States, a Complex Tension Can Develop for Young New Americans." Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times, 28 Nov. 1993. Web. 26 June 2016.
"Feelings and Thoughts." Supporting Young People Coping with Grief, Loss and Death(n.d.): 91-96. SMART Recovery. Smart Recovery. Web. 26 June 2016
Andreasen, Nancy C. "Creativity in Art and Science: Are There Two Cultures?" Dialogues in Clinical Neuroscience. Les Laboratoires Servier, Mar. 2012. Web. 26 June 2016.
Vesna, Victoria. “TwoCultures part1” Cole UC online. Youtube, 30 March 2012. Web. 26 June 2016. < https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNI7dF3DIAM>
Vesna, Victoria. “TwoCultures pt2” Cole UC online. Youtube, 31 March 2012. Web. 26 June 2016. < https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUr4xxZ_0gw>