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The Creative Brain: The Science of Genius Paperback – October 31, 2006
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“Andreasen writes with clarity and ease… She makes wonderful connections between the arts and the sciences.” —Nature
From the Back Cover
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Andreasen writes with clarity and ease She makes wonderful connections between the arts and the sciences."
Top Customer Reviews
The Creative Brain begins with an introduction to what creativity is and is measured in terms of originality, utility (how useful the creation is), and its final product. Author Nancy Andreasen colorfully describes many instances of creative thinking at work, from the moment a person obtained a stone and realized its potential use as a tool, to the creation of beautiful and awe-inspiring masterpieces of artists. What separates these people from others that give them extraordinary creativity that only a handful of individuals possess? According to the author creativity is found and further enriched in terms of nature and nurture. One possible example of "hereditary" creativity is the Huxley family. Thomas Henry Huxley was a notable English biologist. His grandson Julian Huxley was an anthropologist who worked on the theory of evolution. Andrew Huxley was a distinguished physiologist who won the Nobel Peace Prize for his work on neural impulses and muscle contraction. Aldous Huxley was a novelist who famously wrote Brave New World in 1932. One possible example of nurtures influence on creativity is, as the author describes, the cradle of creativity.Read more ›
So, what did I gain from reading this book? Some insights, such as:
* "...most creative people are smart but don't have to be extremely smart. An IQ around 120 is good enough...except for scientists."
* "Personality traits that define the creative individual include openness to experience, adventuresomeness, rebelliousness, individualism, sensitivity, playfulness, persistence, curiosity and simplicity."
* The key components of the creative people: 1. Slip into a state of intense concentration and focus. 2. The muse sits on my shoulder. 3. Prone to have a wandering mind, flooded with ideas and thoughts and a tendency not to censor them. 4. Disengaged, dispassionate observers, and seem aloof, detached and even coldhearted, at times.
* "During the creative process the brain begins by disorganizing, making links between shadowy forms of objects or symbols or words or remembered experiences that have not been previously linked. Out of this disorganization, self-organization eventually emerges and takes over in the brain." (Shades of Chaos Theory!).
* How the brain's self-organization process, when done right can lead to a new idea or creativity. Done wrong, it can lead to psychosis. There is a correlation between genius and insanity, between creativity in children and the rate of mental illness in biological parents.
* Environments that cradle and nurture creativity.Read more ›
A delightful, informative and instructive book for anyone interested in or charged with task of optimal nurturing human potential. Dr. Andreasen, PhD (Lit.) also psychiatrist MD, addresses the nature of creativity, tackles the co-existence of genius and insanity issue, queries what creates the creative brain and as denouement, expounds upon building better brains.
The clarity of her writing, reviews of literary material on creativity, presentation of findings of her own research links between creativity and insanities, and concise up-to-date reviews of neuroscience anatomy and revelations provided by mMRI, sMRI and fMRI observations is excellent for both scientist and non-scientists. She concludes on techniques to maximize nurturing to enhance maximum potential of inherent creativity in a manner clearly timely (TV, urbanism, etc.) in a manner pleasureable to read. Having read more than a dozen books devoted to definition and origin of genius/gifted/creative children, this book stands singularly as an excellent read that is both timely and not in need of glossaries for jargon terminology. The inclusion of 'life-changing exercises for your brain' is sufficient reason to read this treatise.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting and fairly easy to read. Even my 16 year old grandson enjoyed (most of) it.Published 12 months ago by irene dellaria
As Nancy Andreasen explains in the first chapter, "This book has been bubbling and churning in my brain for nearly thirty years, and I am grateful that I have finally found time to... Read morePublished on April 20, 2013 by Robert Morris
Andreaasen does a poor job of describing the genius of creativity. The presentation is not anecdotal or interesting though she does choose interesting people to profile like John... Read morePublished on June 20, 2012 by Hexagonite
I just got this for my class and I just not interested about other people. I'm more interested in creating things than reading about it.Published on May 5, 2012 by Alicia
Andreasen offers a great sourcebook introducing the history of research concerned with the nature and nurturing of creativity and genius. Read morePublished on February 6, 2011 by Anthony R. Dickinson
Neuroplasticity is a rather new concept, formerly a taboo in the neuroscience realm, which has caused a lot of excitement. Read morePublished on October 20, 2008 by Farzad Inanlou
The Creative Brain is an ambitious book that attempts to understand how creativity is supported and enabled by the human brain. Read morePublished on March 18, 2008 by Tom Hunter
It is a bit disconcerting to purchase a book and find that it has previously been sold. with another title(which I had already purchased and read). Is this ethical? Read morePublished on September 15, 2007 by Thomas E. Simpson Pa