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  • Author: Helle Porsdam x
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Abstract

In contemporary debates about the pros and cons of digital humanities (DH), there are certain interesting echoes of the famous ``two cultures debate'' – the one started by C.P. Snow in a lecture at the University of Cambridge in 1959, and followed up by another Cambridge lecture in 1962 by F.R. Leavis. Persons with a background in the arts had, Snow argued, a negative attitude toward the natural/technological sciences which made them unwilling to believe in the good of scientific and technological progress. Countering Snow's lecture, F.R. Leavis claimed that Snow's technological enthusiasm left no room for the more contemplative values that characterize the humanities. The ``two cultures'' debate has been with us ever since. In its current form, the ``two cultures'' controversy concerns relations between digital media and changing cultural interactions. Making it possible to bridge the gap between the ``two cultures'' by integrating quantitative methods into core humanities research, the new media influence both intellectual frameworks for humanities scholarship, and practices of translation, interpretation and mediatisation in relation to cultural encounters. In this article, I hope, by means of revisiting this old debate, to clarify some of the underlying issues.

European Perspectives on Law and Humanities