Paola Pennisi

The Individual Narcosis of Creativity

  • Abstract

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Keywords: Creativity; Fromm; Insight; Divergent Thinking; Ratchet Effect; Primates.

We use to think that creativity is an attribute that any individual, to a greater or lesser extent, has. In this essay I will try to show that, besides the obvious differences among individuals, every man choose, more or less consciously, to narcotize part of his creative attitude because in some cases it is advantageous for himself and for the species. In order to do that, I will give a working definition of the concept of creativity (§ 1); then, echoing the words of Erich Fromm, I will outline an individual phenomenology of the creative attitude that might allow the reader to recognize a creative behavior when he sees it (§ 2); (§ 3) lastly, I will try to show, through the use of empirical data on man and on non-human primates, what are the advantages for the species and for the single individual of not acting creatively.

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