Imagine

Imagine

How Creativity Works

Book - 2012
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Did you know that the most creative companies have centralized bathrooms? That brainstorming meetings are a terrible idea? That the color blue can help you double your creative output?

From the New York Times best-selling author of How We Decide comes a sparkling and revelatory look at the new science of creativity. Shattering the myth of muses, higher powers, even creative "types," Jonah Lehrer demonstrates that creativity is not a single gift possessed by the lucky few. It's a variety of distinct thought processes that we can all learn to use more effectively.

Lehrer reveals the importance of embracing the rut, thinking like a child, daydreaming productively, and adopting an outsider's perspective (travel helps). He unveils the optimal mix of old and new partners in any creative collaboration, and explains why criticism is essential to the process. Then he zooms out to show how we can make our neighborhoods more vibrant, our companies more productive, and our schools more effective.

You'll learn about Bob Dylan's writing habits and the drug addictions of poets. You'll meet a Manhattan bartender who thinks like a chemist, and an autistic surfer who invented an entirely new surfing move. You'll see why Elizabethan England experienced a creative explosion, and how Pixar's office space is designed to spark the next big leap in animation.

Collapsing the layers separating the neuron from the finished symphony, Imagine reveals the deep inventiveness of the human mind, and its essential role in our increasingly complex world.


  http://www.jonahlehrer.com/  

Publisher: Toronto : Allen Lane, c2012.
ISBN: 9780544002296
9780547386072
9780670064557
Branch Call Number: 153. 35 LEH
Characteristics: xx, 279 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.

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t
Tabaqui
Aug 30, 2017

A fun read that has at least some truth to it. Definitely, there is truth in the fact that you have some of your best ideas when you're just waking up - because that actually happened to me while I was in the middle of the book. Although not all his information is necessarily true, it is still interesting to read and gives some good insight. I wouldn't read this for scientific fact, but I would certainly read it for enjoyment. *A few quotes have some brief swearing.*

t
TooManyBooks
May 04, 2016

Explains how the brain functions creatively. New ideas are generated more frequently when people are interacting with other people. Interaction can be on a very casual basis, as in just talking to someone you are standing in line next to, or more deliberate, as in a company like Pixar, where office space is designed to create lots of opportunities to interact with other people.
Writing style reminded me of Malcolm Gladwell, especially I. The book Blink.

j
JudithE
Nov 16, 2013

I actually really liked this, and it's consistent with other work I've read on creativity. It may not all be original, but it's interesting, even fascinating at times.

r
RuthV
Dec 03, 2012

This book does have some interesting insights on creativity. However, it has recently come to light that the author fabricated quotes from Bob Dylan to support his views
http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/jonah-lehrer-resigns-from-new-yorker-after-making-up-dylan-quotes-for-his-book/

Unfortunately, it makes the whole book a lot more difficult to enjoy now!

e
eastvanbookfan
Nov 10, 2012

I'm having writers block over what to say in this comment. Just kidding!!! Excellent book in my opinion. I learned a lot about creativity. Some of the things in my life make sense due to the science I have learned in this book. For example, I seem to great great ideas at strange times when I am not even thinking about creating. Now I know why due to reading this book....

g
GummiGirl
Sep 05, 2012

Too bad it's fiction! Okay, most of it is probably just recycled, and it still has some interesting points to make. But for non-fiction writers, there may be such a thing as too much creativity.

e
emmaledu
Aug 22, 2012

Refreshing book

k
kimthomasin
Aug 21, 2012

Boo HISS! Plagiarism!

JCS3F Aug 08, 2012

Imagine. Imagine that, after the publication of Jonah Lehrer's latest (last?) book 'Imagine', quotes he attributed to Bob Dylan hadn't been proven to be complete fabrications. 100% BS. Imagine that Lehrer didn't borrow heavily from Kahneman's 'Thinking Fast and Slow', Hyde's 'Common as Air', Glaeser's 'Triumph of the Cities', Isaacson's 'Steve Jobs'. Imagine that Lehrer hadn't simply written about stuff he liked (amphetamine, fancy cocktails, cool people he's met). Imagine. What would remain? A B+ undergraduate psychology dissertation. This book alone justifies public libraries. Instead of having $26 picked from my pocket, I was only out $2 in late fees.

n
nickparle
Aug 08, 2012

A lot of the controversies surrounding this book are pretty minor, and its a shame because this book is great at explaining what creativity is and how the brain generates it. How are new ideas formed? Simply by recombining existing concepts in interesting and useful ways.

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LazyNeko
May 17, 2012

In fact, the only way to remain creative over time-- to not be undone by our expertise-- is to experiment with ignorance, to stare at things we don't fully understand.

n
nickparle
Apr 18, 2012

"You know an idea has promise when it seems obvious in retrospect." -West

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