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Genius and the MindStudies of Creativity and Temperament$
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Andrew Steptoe

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198523734

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198523734.001.0001

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Creativity and genius: a systems perspective

Creativity and genius: a systems perspective

(p.38) (p.39) Chapter 3 Creativity and genius: a systems perspective
Genius and the Mind

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Oxford University Press

A complementary perspective on creativity and achievement is provided in this chapter with respect to the sociocultural dimension. The author of this chapter has been prominent in the investigation of talent in early life, and in studying the relationship between optimal experiences, ‘flow’ and inventiveness. This chapter reminds us that exceptional ability is not a property of the individual in isolation, but depends on social recognition and appreciation. There is a complicated interchange between the person, the domain of activity in which he or she works, be it painting, science, or fiction writing, and the social organization of that domain. This is best understood within a ‘systems’ perspective of interaction and feedback. The chapter argues that it is the ‘gatekeepers’ of that domain who determine what is creative and what is not.

Keywords:   genius, creativity, mind, social recognition, sociocultural dimension, inventiveness, cultural domain, social field, exceptional ability

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