"We're not, as a whole, introspective"

less than 1 minute read

The Guardian has a profile of the “inventor of the pill”, who in his later years has turned to fiction as a novelist and playwright: “Carl Djerassi: ‘Scientists aren’t just Frankensteins or Strangeloves or nerds’”.

The piece fits with my recurring writing topic of science in art, and Djerassi’s voice is unique:

Above all, he's interested in describing what he calls the "tribal behaviour" of scientists and he's critical of the scientific community for being reluctant to explain that behaviour to the outside world. "I'm a member of that tribe," he says, "and it's a tribe that does not advertise its behaviour not because they want to keep it secret, but because they're not interested in discussing it. We're not, as a whole, introspective, because we're so focused on what we're doing. But it means that people outside science have a very limited idea about who we really are, and how we think."