Saturday, May 8, 2010

Kunios: Creativity Relies on Subconscious, Shutting Down Left and Allowing Right Brain Activity

Tags: Kunios, Creativity, Subconscious, Shutting Down Left and Allowing Right Brain Activity

I have long considered creativity more of a subconscious instant solution rather than a more logical test used to test creativity. A psychologist at Drexel University, finally, has proposed something I long believed to be closer to creativity thinking. Left brain thinking to solve a problem is good for the more obvious problems where the data are not contradictory, real creativity is not what most researchers test for, but what they don’t test for.

I have been convinced forever that right brain processing is heavily involved in the creative process so I hypothesized decades ago that women and gay men who have a woman’s brain largely, tend to be more creative which should be obvious by looking at the arts. After the uncontrolled Reagan ignored epidemic of AIDS in the 1980s, the quality of films and television drama dropped sharply.

I also noticed that left handed persons heavily populate the more creative parts of computing and science. I assumed that left handed persons make more use of both sides of the brain. As more women have entered the largely nonsocial and aggressive profession in science, I have seen a jump in really novel approaches and findings in the recent decade.

I have also seen that when increasingly women get into management, I have seen great improvements in cable station programming belonging to NBC.

Jim Kawakami, May 8, 2010,

My Brilliant Career: Bonnie Hammer

The president of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment and Universal Cable Productions turned a sleepy network into a reliable hit-making machine, not to mention one of the most watched channels in America Elle April 5, 2010

… When NBC bought USA and SCI FI in 2004, Jeff Zucker put me in charge of USA Networks. We did a lot of research to find out what was working and what wasn’t, and we actually had to hear a lot of things we didn’t like. USA was predictable; it was boring. I was always a believer that a broad entertainment channel could have a brand—most people thought it couldn’t—so we came up with “Characters Welcome.” All television has characters, and it helped create a kind of engagement between those at home and those on the air. When we’re looking at scripts, we ask ourselves: “Is it blue sky, is it escapism, does it have a singular character that’s dysfunctional in a fun way rather than a negative way?” Life is very tough right now, and people don’t want to go to sleep depressed. Our shows are likable. For each of the past four years, we’ve had the No. 1 new cable series. There was Psych, In Plain Sight, and then Burn Notice. Last year there were two: We launched Royal Pains, which broke all records, and White Collar. USA is now the No. 1 network on cable television. I like to say we went from a very soft, fuzzy, boring, tattered slipper to a Louboutin.

I think the reason that a lot of my team has been together for more than 10 years has to do with the fact that there’s somebody who listens to them, who cares, who is sensitive, who knows that their life comes before their work. My career is really, really important and I love it, but the life highs—like seeing my son graduate—need to me to be more important than the career highs, which are fleeting. If you believe you’re going to find that perfect Zen harmony of 50 percent here, 50 percent there, you might as well stop. …

Charting Creativity: Signposts of a Hazy Territory Patricia Cohen NY Times May 8, 2010

“…. Like many researchers over the past 30 years or so, Dr. Jung has relied on a common definition of creativity: the ability to combine novelty and usefulness in a particular social context.

As the study of creativity has expanded to include brain neurology, however, some scientists question whether this standard definition and the tests for it still make sense. John Kounios, a psychologist at Drexel University, argues that the standard “has outlived its usefulness.”

“Creativity is a complex concept; it’s not a single thing,” he said, adding that brain researchers needed to break it down into its component parts. Dr. Kounios, who studies the neural basis of insight, defines creativity as the ability to restructure one’s understanding of a situation in a nonobvious way. …

A lot of different areas of the brain are involved in devising a solution, no matter which process is used, but during the Aha! moment, there is a burst of high-frequency activity in the right temporal lobe, Dr. Kounios said. What’s more, he said, he and Dr. Beeman could predict in advance which process a subject would use. They watched the brains of systematic problem solvers prepare by paying closer attention to the screen before the words appeared. Their visual cortices were on high alert.

The brains of those who got a flash of creative insight, by contrast, prepared by automatically shutting down activity in the visual cortex for an instant — the equivalent of closing your eyes to block out distractions so that you can concentrate better. In this case, Dr. Kounios said that the brain was “cutting out other sensory input and boosting the signal-to-noise ratio” to retrieve the answer from the subconscious.

According to Kenneth Heilman, a neurologist at the University of Florida and the author of “Creativity and the Brain” (2005), creativity not only involves coming up with something new, but also with shutting down the brain’s habitual response, or letting go of conventional solutions.

Risk taking and addictive behavior should also be measured, since both traits play a role in creativity, he said.

There may be, for example, a dampening of norepinephrine, the neurotransmitter that sets off the fight-or-flight alarm. That’s why creative connections often occur when people are most peaceful — relaxing under a tree, like Isaac Newton, or in a dream state, like Coleridge when he thought up “Kubla Khan.” … “

No comments:

Post a Comment