Had a couple of minutes to kill. Did a web search for “what is the difference between inorganic and organic chemistry.” Skipped directly to search results page 3 and beyond to find the most horrible and entertaining examples. Such as this.
I think Organiic chemistry is chemistry most ly about living things and carbon and Inorganic chemistry is just dealing with nonliving things
Or how about this? By a “College Professor.”
Organic molecules are the chemicals of life, compounds composed of more than one type of element, that are found in, and produced by, living organisms.
As if Friedrich Wöhler hadn’t disproved vitalism nearly 200 years ago.
Allow me instead to try to illustrate the difference between inorganic and organic chemistry with a simple reaction scheme.
This reaction is certainly not new or particularity exciting. You will find variations of it in about every text book out there. Sodium borohydride was discovered in the early 1940s, but kept secret for over a decade. (As if its powers in the wrong hands would have changed the course of history…)
Anyway, in the reaction above — what do you see?
I see a reduction. That is because I’m an organic chemist. Let’s just pretend this reaction was new, and I wanted to publish it. I would then maybe entitle my manuscript “Sodium borohydride mediated reduction of acetophenone to its corresponding alcohol.”
But inorganic chemists. What do they see? They see an oxidation! Their publication would be something like “Acetophenone mediated oxidation of sodium borohydride to boric acid.”
Let’s get serious for a while. There is no clear boundry between inorganic and organic chemistry. For example, look at some of the most common organo-metal complexes used in OLEDs. They are often based on iridium or aluminum. Inorganic or organic? It depends on who you ask.
Also: Whenever there is a reduction, there is an oxidation — and the other way around, of course.
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