Do You Really Need a Muse to Be Creative? (NSQ Ep. 54)

Also: is short-sightedness part of human nature?

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Relevant Research & References

Here’s where you can learn more about the people and ideas in this episode:


  • Sir Ken Robinson (deceased), author, speaker and international advisor on education in the arts.
  • E. B. White (deceased), author and essayist.
  • Ernest Hemingway (deceased), journalist and novelist.
  • Red Smith (deceased), sportswriter.
  • Anders Ericsson (deceased), professor of cognitive psychology at Florida State University.
  • Dean Keith Simonton, professor of psychology at University of California, Davis.
  • Martin Seligman, professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania.
  • Daniel Gilbert, professor of psychology at Harvard University.
  • George Loewenstein, professor of economics and psychology at Carnegie Mellon University.
  • Michael Lewis, author and financial journalist.
  • Richard Thaler, professor of behavioral science and economics at the University of Chicago.
  • John Maynard Keynes (deceased), professor of economics at Cambridge University.


  • “Navigating Into the Future or Driven by the Past,” by Martin E. P. Seligman, Peter Railton, Roy F. Baumeister, and Chandra Sripada (Perspectives on Psychological Science, 2013).
  • Daily Rituals: How Artists Work, by Mason Currey (2013).
  • “Power and Reduced Temporal Discounting,” by Priyanka D. Joshi and Nathanael J. Fast (Psychological Science, 2013).
  • Thinking, Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman (2011).
  • Choosing My Religion: A Memoir of a Family Beyond Belief, by Stephen J. Dubner (2006).
  • “Do Schools Kill Creativity,” Sir Ken Robinson (TED, 2006).
  • “Affective Forecasting: Knowing What to Want,” by Timothy D. Wilson and Daniel T. Gilbert (Current Directions in Psychological Science, 2005).
  • “Are Genius and Madness Related? Contemporary Answers to an Ancient Question,” by Dean Keith Simonton (Psychiatric Times, 2005).
  • “Creative Expertise as Superior Reproducible Performance: Innovative and Flexible Aspects of Expert Performance,” by K. Anders Ericsson (Psychological Inquiry, 1999).


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