How Creativity Works

Monday, May 30, 2011

Where does creativity come from? Kurt Andersen, host of Studio 360, joins its founding producer Julie Burstein to talk about her new book, culled from the archives of the series: Spark: How Creativity Works  (Harper, 2011)

Leave your comment below! How do you find your creative spark? Is it more like going to work, or more like thinking and dreaming? And are you driven to create more by the beautiful, the terrible or the ordinary?


Kurt Andersen and Julie Burstein
News, weather, Radiolab, Brian Lehrer and more.
Get the best of WNYC in your inbox, every morning.

Comments [3]

Jessie Henshaw from way uptown

I think the probable real explanation for both the lack of cultural change of late, and the lack of specificity in the demands of the Occupy movement, are closely related. I'm approaching it from a view of natural evolution in complex learning systems. In evolutionary terms, we've learns new things worth keeping, and are avoiding the task of learning about others.

Evolution of culture, or any other complex system, is a “stepwise process”. It’s like going through successive “graduations” as it to higher grade levels. At each level of new organization you get a foundation that you keep for a while for exploring and discovering the next. We all experience that succession from one “grade level” to the next in our personal learning cycle, throughout our lives as learning organisms.

Why Occupy demands lack specificity is that the succession of learning levels in nature also involves letting go of old ones, sort of like walking. To make progress you also need to shift away from reliance on previous foundations to put your weight on another. In this case we’re conflicted with letting go of one of the old foundation cultures.

That’s the culture surrounding the use of money to multiply our incomes and impacts on the earth, with the dream of easy limitless growth. When we adopted that ethos we lived in what was then an “infinite world of resources”. Now consuming our resources ever faster has now outgrown that purpose, and we’re in denial and so can’t even discuss it publically.

Our culture still “wants its cake and to eat it too” in terms of having multiplying money without multiplying consequences.

Dec. 16 2011 11:54 AM
Renee from CT

Totally agree! A remake of Footloose!?
Could this be partly driven by the recession?
As a longterm victim of the recession- thank god- because I can't afford to do a major overhaul of my wardrobe every year.

Dec. 16 2011 11:11 AM
gary krane PhD from brooklyn

I am ceo/founder/psychologist of a breakthrough web app to help couples have happier, stronger, and MORE CREATIVE marriages/committed relationships. My own religion is creativity.
I would love to be put in email contact with julie. My email is gary at CoupleSpace tot net (working title), since our site is in stealth. And i love most studio 360s.
I was once also a national award-winning journalist/doc producer

May. 30 2011 05:25 PM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.