Essay about The Two Cultures Problem

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Many post World War II thinkers have been perplexed by the problem of how or even whether people from different cultures can understand each other. The problem arose when we started to think of culture as formative of language and thought. The main solutions to this problem have followed either Noam Chomsky's approach or W. V. O.Quine's and Nelson Goodman's approach. Chomsky's approach is to think of language and thought as fundamentally universal because they are based on innate and deep linguistic structures. Quine's and Goodman's approach is to think of language and thought as fundamentally variable. For Chomsky, all people have an ability to understand each other regardless of language and culture because all languages are based on the …show more content…
For Popper, science follows the methodology of rational dialogue which transcends culture; for Polanyi scientists use tacit knowledge to make scientific discoveries by joining the distinctive culture of science.

Many dismiss Popper's views for being too naive. They argue that science is part of Western culture, and as part of Western culture, it produces knoweldge which is relative to Western culture. Science does not transcend culture. Rather, science is an artifact of a specific culture and as an aritifact of Western culture produces a language and form of thinking that constructs a reality relative to Western culture. Popper replies to this criticism in his essay, "The Myth of the Framework." Popper's argument is that frameworks can be criticised in the same way all theories can be criticised. However, Popper seems to miss the main point of his critics argument which is that frameworks both define theories and set the procedures for criticising theories within the frameworks. All criticism occurs within frameworks, and hence both depends upon and reinforces the framework. The question here is whether and to what degree, if at all, theories are formed by frameworks?

Ironically, it is Polanyi's theory of how science creates knowledge through the use of personal knowledge that provides an answer to that question. Science forms a

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