The Origins of Creativity

The Origins of Creativity

Book - 2017 | First edition
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Offers an examination of the relationship between the humanities and the sciences: what they offer to each other, how they can be united, and where they still fall short. Both endeavors, Edward O. Wilson reveals, have their roots in human creativity--the defining trait of our species. Reflecting on the deepest origins of language, storytelling, and art, Wilson demonstrates how creativity began not ten thousand years ago, as we have long assumed, but over one hundred thousand years ago in the Paleolithic age. Chronicling this evolution of creativity from primate ancestors to humans, The Origins of Creativity shows how the humanities, spurred on by the invention of language, have played a largely unexamined role in defining our species. And in doing so, Wilson explores what we can learn about human nature from a surprising range of creative endeavors--the instinct to create gardens, the use of metaphors and irony in speech, and the power of music and song. Our achievements in science and the humanities, Wilson notes, make us uniquely advanced as a species, but also give us the potential to be supremely dangerous, most worryingly in our abuse of the planet.
Publisher: New York, NY :, Liveright Publishing Corporation, a division of W.W. Norton & Company,, [2017]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9781631493188
Branch Call Number: 153.35 WIL NVD
Characteristics: 243 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm


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Feb 10, 2019

Its wonderful to read from those who are deeply knowledgeable in some field and expanding their view of the universe and entering the weird land of philosophy. Unfortunately, Wilson makes sweeping statements, and silly stereotyping of the diverse range of fields lumped together under the label 'humanities'. His very own suggestion about situating the fields within their biological contexts has been done already in philosophy several times and even other areas, such as military history, has also done so. Nonetheless, this is clearly and earnestly written, and has a useful further reading guide.

Dec 06, 2018

Edward O Wilson is a gift to mankind. Man is one of the best and he writes so beautifully easy to understand even if he is talking about hard things.
This book is not a standard creativity book.
It is more a biological book which is similar to his Consilience book, it tracks the history of human through gene evolution, cultural gene evolution and before sapiens, 1300 cc brain, how humanities is lagging behind other science how it help us to improve and understand creativity and us more. Also talk about narrow focus on human brain for creativity but forgetting other animals

Apr 15, 2018

Incoherent, overreaching.

Feb 05, 2018

Not exactly what I was expecting, but thought-provoking nonetheless. Wilson provides an interesting take on the science vs. art debate, and makes a convincing case for science and art. Indeed, the two are inextricably linked by evolution.

This quick read deftly lays out the biological antecedents of humanity's creative capacity, and why we tell the stories we tell.

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