CAIRN-INT.INFO : International Edition

Scientists today are trilingual at least: they have their mother tongue, the technical language of their discipline and English as their vehicular language. Multilingualism is essential to a scientist because science is inseparable from communication in all its different registers, and particularly those of written and oral language. Every kind of science goes hand in hand with scientific popularization: in this sense, being a scientist means learning to translate what things - rather than people - are saying. Speaking only one language, in this context, is not just a disadvantage: it is an illusion, because concepts, whether in the exact or the human sciences, cannot be grasped directly without the use of language. Lavoisier believed that languages are “analytical methods per se” and that, conversely, “the logic of the sciences essentially lies in their language.” This is why the division between exact sciences, liberal arts and aesthetics is completely artificial: there is no real gap between the three, and we urgently need to rediscover this fact.


  • technical language
  • scientific popularisation
  • scientific logic
  • chemistry
  • aesthetics
Pierre Laszlo
Interview with
Michaël Oustinoff
This is the latest publication of the author on cairn.
Uploaded on on 30/11/-0001
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