Creativity and Innovation

Topics: Innovation, Creativity, Invention Pages: 13 (4153 words) Published: July 9, 2010
Creativity is the ability to generate innovative ideas and manifest them from thought into reality. The process involves original thinking and then producing. The process of creation was historically reserved for deities creating "from nothing" in creationism and other creation myths. Over time, the term creativity came to include human innovation, especially in art and science and led to the emergence of the creative class.

Creativity comes from the Latin term creō "to create, make". The ways in which societies have perceived the concept of creativity have changed throughout history, as has the term itself. Originally in the Christian period: "creatio" came to designate God's act of Ex nihilo, "creation from nothing." "Creatio" thus had a different meaning than "facere" ("to make") and did not apply to human functions. The ancient view that art is not a domain of creativity persisted in this period. History of the term and the concept

A shift occurred in modern times. Renaissance men had a sense of their own independence, freedom and creativity, and sought to give voice to this sense. The first to actually apply the word "creativity" was the Polish poet Maciej Kazimierz Sarbiewski, who applied it exclusively to poetry. For over a century and a half, the idea of human creativity met with resistance, due to the fact that the term "creation" was reserved for creation "from nothing." Baltasar Gracián (1601–58) would only venture to write: "Art is the completion of nature, as if it were a second Creator..."[2] The ancient Greek concept of art (in Greek, τέχνη, téchnē—the root of "technique" and "technology"), with the exception of poetry, involved not freedom of action but subjection to rules. In Rome, this Greek concept was partly shaken, and visual artists were viewed as sharing, with poets, imagination and inspiration.[3] Although neither the Greeks nor the Romans had a word that directly corresponded to the word "creativity," their art, architecture, music, inventions and discoveries provide numerous examples of what today would be described as creative works. The Greek scientist of Syracuse, Archimedes experienced the creative moment in his Eureka experience, finding the answer to a problem he had been wrestling with for a long time. At the time, the concept of "genius" probably came closest to describing the creative talents that brought forth such works.[4] By the 18th century and the Age of Enlightenment, the concept of creativity was appearing more often in art theory, and was linked with the concept of imagination.[1] The Western view of creativity can be contrasted with the Eastern view. For Hindus, Confucianists, Taoists and Buddhists, creation was at most a kind of discovery or mimicry, and the idea of creation "from nothing" had no place in these philosophies and religions.[4] In the West, by the 19th century, not only had art come to be regarded as creativity, but it alone was so regarded. When later, at the turn of the 20th century, there began to be discussion of creativity in the sciences (e.g., Jan Łukasiewicz, 1878–1956) and in nature (e.g., Henri Bergson), this was generally taken as the transference, to the sciences, of concepts that were proper to art.[1] Creative process

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, leading mathematicians and scientists such as Hermann von Helmholtz (1896) and Henri Poincaré (1908) began to reflect on and publicly discuss their creative processes, and these insights were built on in early accounts of the creative process by pioneering theorists such as Graham Wallas (1926) and Max Wertheimer (1945). However, the formal starting point for the scientific study of creativity, from the standpoint of orthodox psychological literature, is generally considered to have been J.P. Guilford's 1950 address to the American Psychological Association, which helped popularize the topic[5] and focus attention on a scientific approach to conceptualizing creativity...
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