Creativity is much prized in the arts, science, business and the classroom. What does the creative process look like? Under what conditions does it flourish - what ignites the creative spark? This course developed by Dr. Karen Boiko for MIT attempts to answer these questions, exploring ways creativity has been understood in Western culture: what we prize and fear about creativity and its wellsprings; how writers, artists, scientists and inventors have described their own creative processes; how psychologists and philosophers have theorized it; ways in which creativity has been represented in Western culture, particularly in 20th century films; and creativity in everyday life, including our own lives. In addition to selected readings, we’ll watch video profiles of choreographer Paul Taylor, architect Maya Lin and jazz musician Dave Brubeck. We’ll keep journals in which we note our own observations and reflections on creative process.
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