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Re: [xmca] Social Construction of Creativity

Guys, I think I might have some input o  this very subject, if it's of any
use to you.
I taught a class at the Corcoran College of Art and Design a few years ago,
and I felt that
the the translation of Vygotsky's work on creativity hit the nail in the
head in a number of ways.
Not having read the totality of this thread, I hope I'm not recapitulating
anything that has been said, but just on of the points that comes to memory
over the tack that I I adopted (on one front) was this:

I needed the art students, or implored them, to take fully on board a
knowledge of the idea that creativity
is socially constructed on several dimensions, one of them being to do with
the mind, basically. It was a psychology course that they had signed up for
- the psychology of creativity. The class had 2 main conceptual strands. On
of which being the objective of explaining creativity; and the other, the
objective of fostering creativity, socially.

For the first of these, I used Vygotsky's inherent link, when talking about
the psychological, and the action based, processes of creativity, involving
reality thinking (steeped in the world of language-based, concrete reality
of being an artist, getting by, and making work that is communicable and
that takes the world forward, so to speak), and the imagination. Imagination
oriented thinking. And the relationship or constant interplay between the
two processes.

I had/have a crusade going on - I needed to let these guys, the students,
rid themselves of the idea that they, as artists, are proto-typically
secluded, sequestered, solitary agents, needing come up with ideas, and work
from their ideas, that is a product of that type of mind, that type of
existence in the world. For ideas, they must talk with people, engage
expertise and insights of non-artists in som esubject area, interview these
non-artists, in semi-formal, semi-structured, and somewhat open-ended talk,
with the opportunity for reflective insights to just come out of
converstation - and to make art and art concepts from it. Hree's a way, then
to foster one's creativity.

Then I used - to make a proclamation of what creativity is, or an
operational definition, a pedagogical statement about it - I used the
example of 'outsider art,' such as schizophrenic art.  And basically to say
that, that that type of art, nice, and interesting pictures, nonetheless -
is not creative (under our reading). Thos types of vivified, frenetic,
renderings - might be judged as a window into a schizophrenic mind, but as
they are not a product of the interplay between imagination and a bona fide,
and veridical reality, or placed within a reality, a real world, a
communicative world - then they are not creative in Vygotsky's meaning of
the act. And *act *being the operative word.

While I feel that artists can perhaps constitutionally skirt with, and
handle opposites and strict, or the strictures of dichotomies, their value
is in remaining sane, avoiding schophrenic private language. They must. But
to do that, then again, they must be engaged with the world, engaged with

Scot Hamilton.

On Sat, May 23, 2009 at 7:57 AM, Mike Cole <lchcmike@gmail.com> wrote:

> The Steiner and Meehan chapter looks like just the ticket, Peter. Off to te
> library this morning.
> There is a latter piece by Vygotsky on creativity that I want to look at,
> but I think it less relevant.
> mike
> On Sat, May 23, 2009 at 3:10 AM, Peter Smagorinsky <smago@uga.edu> wrote:
> > See also the john-steiner and Meehan chapter at
> >
> >
> http://books.google.com/books?id=V6r5IUHSJiwC&pg=PT1&lpg=PT1&dq=smagorinsky+
> >
> >
> lee+cambridge+university+press+vygotskian&source=bl&ots=vsMHGaZaq8&sig=EqcJ0
> >
> >
> v7lbSnyhODk-qYsw5TUFNc&hl=en&ei=XcsXSriIGMaGtgezx8TfDA&sa=X&oi=book_result&c
> > t=result&resnum=1#PPA31,M1<
> http://books.google.com/books?id=V6r5IUHSJiwC&pg=PT1&lpg=PT1&dq=smagorinsky+%0Alee+cambridge+university+press+vygotskian&source=bl&ots=vsMHGaZaq8&sig=EqcJ0%0Av7lbSnyhODk-qYsw5TUFNc&hl=en&ei=XcsXSriIGMaGtgezx8TfDA&sa=X&oi=book_result&c%0At=result&resnum=1#PPA31,M1
> >
> >
> > If that link doesn't work, it's in
> > http://www.cambridge.org/us/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=9780521638784
> >
> > Peter Smagorinsky
> > Professor of English Education and Program Coordinator
> > The University of Georgia
> > 125 Aderhold Hall
> > Athens, GA 30602
> > smago@uga.edu
> > http://www.coe.uga.edu/lle/faculty/smagorinsky/index.html
> >
> >
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu]
> On
> > Behalf Of Mike Cole
> > Sent: Friday, May 22, 2009 7:33 PM
> > To: eXtended Mind, Culture,Activity
> > Subject: [xmca] Social Construction of Creativity
> >
> > Here is the sort of approach I had in mind to the problem on the subject
> > line.
> > Now gotta go read more about LSV on this topic!!  :-)) mike
> >
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> >
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