From the point of view of software engineering, the rapid spread of C represented a great leap backward. It revealed that the community at large had hardly grasped the true meaning of the term 'high-level language' which became an ill-understood buzzword. What, if anything, was to be 'high-level'? As this issue lies at the core of software engineering, we need to elaborate.
from : Wirth, N. (2008). A Brief History of Software Engineering. IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, 30(3), 32–39. doi:10.1109/MAHC.2008.33