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Is the lone genius a total myth?

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https://www.vox.com/2014/8/17/6005947/powers-of-two-lone-genius-collaboration

vox.com

Is the lone genius a total myth?
The conventional view of history is filled with lone geniuses: men and women who, through talent and inspiration, achieved feats no one else had before. Pablo Picasso. Vincent van Gogh. Albert Einstein. Emily Dickinson. Joshua Wolf Shenk, an author and essayist, has a provocative response to this idea: all these lone geniuses were just the more well-known halves of collaborative duos.

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The lone genius is a myth

All great achievements involve some measure of collaboration.

Some geniuses were obvious partners - like Orville and Wilbur Wright, or Marie and Pierre Curie, or John ...

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Creativity and collaboration

The interaction between people is indeed the fundamental engine of the creative process.

We are just not so aware of it, because much of the creative exchange happens quietly t...

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Remarkable creativity from one person

There is the case of Emily Dickinson. But looking closer, it becomes clear that she was immensely interested in people and wrote hundreds of poems for particular people, and sending them to them.

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Rivals end up as collaborators

Some competition is important. Rivalry can push people to great heights. When one does excellent work, the other feels the need to do even better.

Matisse and Picasso built on ...

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Use the power of collaboration

The power of collaboration shows up everywhere: between professor and student, where the student learns from the professor, and the professor discovers new things from the questions of the student....

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Creative genius and madness

Creative genius and madness

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Cognitive disinhibition

The creative genius tends to pay attention to things that normally should be ignored or filtered out.

People with schizophrenia are bombarded with hallucinations and delusions that should also be filtered out. However, creative genius differs from them in that the genius can separate bizarre fantasies from realistic possibilities. 

Normal and abnormal

Many geniuses walk the line between the normal and the abnormal. The many impulses and ideas they perceive are a fountain of creativity. However, rational thought does impose a limit on a person's concept of his relation to the world.

The right side of the brain

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Creativity isn’t the preserve of one side of the brain, and it isn’t a talent confined to people with a special kind of brain. If you’re human and you’ve got a brain, you’re capabl...

The “Eureka!” moment

This myth encourages the belief that creativity is a passive process. It suggests you have to wait and hope that you’ll make a breakthrough.

That Eureka moment is actually the last step in a long, involved process and not the only step. For this to happen, your unconscious mind needs material to work with. You have to put in the hard work of studying and mastering your field and exposing yourself to different perspectives.

The lone, eccentric geniuses

In reality, creativity is a team sport.

The lone genius myth is a stereotype and it’s unhelpful because it suggests the route to innovation is to cut oneself off from colleagues and collaboration. You need a modest amount of intelligence to be creative, but extremely high IQ is neither sufficient nor necessary for being an innovator.

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Innovation at work

Innovation at work

When you look at great geniuses like Newton, for example, it can be easy to imagine that their ideas and work came exclusively out of their minds. But that is seldom how it works.

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Everyone gets a lift up

We get to see further than our predecessors, not because we have a greater vision or greater height, but because we are lifted on their gigantic stature.

There are giants in every field. Don't let them intimidate you. Take from anywhere that resonates with you and inspires or fuels your imagination. Build upon it and improve it. Doing this will make your work authentic. Authenticity is invaluable; originality is non-existent.

The "Not invented here" syndrome

'Not invented here syndrome' is a term for situations when we avoid using ideas, products, or data created by someone else, and instead develop our own even if it is more expensive, time-consuming, and of lower quality.
The syndrome can also show up as a reluctance to delegate work.
Creating a new solution may be more exciting, but new solutions create new problems.

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