Are Geniuses Born or Made?

6/19/2017 - Distinguished Professor Emeritus of Psychology Dean Simonton in The Week.

Einstein revolutionized our understanding of the very laws of the universe. But our understanding of how a mind like his works remains stubbornly earthbound. What set his brainpower, his thought processes, apart from those of his merely brilliant peers?

"The No. 1 predictor of impact is productivity," says Dean Keith Simonton, professor emeritus of psychology at UC Davis and a longtime scholar of genius. Big hits emerge after many attempts. "Most articles published in the sciences are never cited by anybody," says Simonton. "Most compositions are not recorded. Most works of art aren't displayed." Thomas Edison invented the phonograph and the first commercially viable light bulb, but these were just two of the 1,000-plus U.S. patents he was awarded.

Read the full story in The Week.

 

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