Creativity is the ability to invent, to bring something original into the world. For the ancients, human creativity was an imitation of and homage to the divine being who created heaven and earth. Today we can talk about creativity in all sorts of activities, in football, cooking, administration, as well as in storytelling and design. We have creative arts, and creative industries. Creativity may be easy to recognize, but it’s not so easy to define, or inculcate or teach. We may suspect that it flourishes in children – perhaps it’s related to play – but that it may be snuffed out by the way most of us tend to live and work as adults. We venerate our great creative artists, but everyone values creativity: there’s a widespread feeling that it’s a good thing, but that there isn’t enough of it around. What is the psychology of creative thinking, and why isn’t everybody creative? Is it related to certain kinds of intelligence, or upbringing? Is it confined to human beings, can it be learned, can it be measured?
Providing Douglas Kerr with creative answers are Dr Page Richards, a teacher of creative writing at HKU and herself a poet, and Jonothan Neelands, Professor of Creative Education at the Warwick Business School and Chair of Drama and Theatre Education at the University of Warwick in the U.K.