LISP has jokingly been called ``the most intelligent way to misuse a computer''.Dijkstra 1972
I think that description is a great compliment because it transmits the full flavor of liberation:
it has assisted a number of our most gifted fellow humans in thinking previously impossible thoughts.
Then LISP emerged as a programming vehicle for symbol manipulation. LISP can be viewed as a highly successful exercise in the mechanization of applied logic. For computing science, its cultural significance is that it liberated computing from the narrow connotations of number crunching by including all formal processes - from symbolic differentiation and integration to formal theorem proving - as computational activities.Dijkstra 1986