Roald Hoffman: chemistry as cabaret

By Diana Wichtel In Science

Print Share
Roald Hoffmann is, as one interviewer noted, “an especially complex molecule” himself. He is a Holocaust survivor who began to write poetry at the age of 40, essays and philosophical articles at 50 and plays after he turned 60. “Narrative, metaphor and various things like this – I wish scientists would accept these,” he says. “But we are under this burden of the more mathematical the better. These ways of shaping the world around us and thinking about them which are so natural to people in the humanities are hard for scientists to accept because they don’t sound scientistic.” ...

Get full access to

Subscribers can read the full version of this story.

You can subscribe and get full online access for as little as $5 per week.

Enjoy the high-quality, in-depth journalism of the Listener magazine with convenient online access. This includes access to thousands of archived articles and up-to-date TV and entertainment listings.

Our great content is available online even before it hits the shelves, and includes more focus on breaking news. With our responsive design you get a great reader experience whether you read from your home computer, tablet, or even smartphone.

Already a subscriber? Just to read full version of this story.

Already an existing print subscriber? As part of your magazine subscription you are entitled to receive full access to the New Zealand Listener Online content. Click here for instructions on how to redeem your digital access.

Or you can subscribe now to get unlimited access to

More by Diana Wichtel

Switch to our mobile site