Kinds of scientists

As to the community of high energy physicists, in many respects it is not all that different from the rest of humanity. One encounters some noble characters, some bastards, also some who are like poets: ‘Strong poets make history … by misreading one another so as to clear imaginative spaces for themselves’. Among the distinguishing characteristics of the group, as I see it, are exceptional intellectual fearlessness, and a high incidence of Shiva complex — unhappiness at not having been born with three eyes and four arms.

— Abraham Pais in Inward Bound

If you are wondering about the quote about poets, it is from Harold Bloom.


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