Schizophrenic Creativity in Nasar's A Beautiful Mind and Ron Howard's Movie

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Schizophrenic Creativity in Nasar's A Beautiful Mind and Ron Howard's Movie In Ron Howard's (2001) A Beautiful Mind, Russell Crowe gives life to Sylvia Nasar's depiction of the schizophrenic genius John Nash in her novel of the same title. Both Nasar and Howard try to depict Nash's creative genius in an effort to unlock understanding of the creative process. The underlying reality of Nash's psychological creative process may never fully be realized due to the extreme difficulty of coherently portraying the mind of a schizophrenic, however the relationships between the portrayals of Nash through each medium shed light on Howard's own view of the creative process. Howard's decision to depict a rather coherent case of schizophrenia…show more content…
Charles Herman, Nash's imagined roommate, appears as soon as Nash begins his graduate life at Princeton. During this time, Nash comes up with his non cooperative Game Theory for which he later receives the Nobel Prize. Howard portrays Nasar's sane but stressed Nash throughout this time, but lays the foundations for his final conclusion that Nash's schizophrenia is directly linked to his creative process. The fact that Charlie is a result of Nash's insanity is Howard's link between Nash's creative process and his schizophrenia. Although Howard deviates from Sylvia Nasar's novel and the truth of Nash's illness with his introduction of Charlie, Howard does depict a very strong and driven John Nash right from the beginning. Both Nasar and Howard show just how much John Nash wanted to be known amongst his peers. His asocial attitude toward his peers has led some to conclude that his reclusive behavior was one of the factors that led to his schizophrenia, and thus his creative mind. Howard definitely makes this link with Charlie. Schizophrenia was Nash's reaction to his solitude. However, Nash's drive to create something profound was, in a sense, schizophrenic in and of itself. Both Nasar's book and Howard's movie show a Nash who is very arrogant about his intellectual ability. Nasar writes: "Nash was very interested that everyone would recognize how smart he was, not because he needed this

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