The, The And, And Artist, Georgia O ' Keefee, By Edgar Allen Poe
1108 WordsOct 21, 20155 Pages
It is common to perceive artists of any kind as more eccentric than the general population. An artist must be able to see the world in ways most would not be able to. However, this attribute has been connected socially and scientifically with “madness”. The idea of the “tortured artist” dates back to 4th century B.C., prompting Plato, the ancient Greek philosopher, to write “Madness, provided it comes as the gift of heaven, is the channel by which we receive the greatest blessings…. madness comes from God, whereas sober sense is merely human” ( Plato’s Phaedrus). This association between madness and greatness quickly became popular, with many famous “mad geniuses” fueling the assertion. The list of afflicted artists is staggering, and…show more content…
1292). However, this study, being the first of it’s kind, came with its limitations. Andreason had started out looking for a connection between schizophrenia and creativity. She believed since schizophrenia often led to unusual perceptions, this would increase creativity. Her findings in this area went against her hypothesis. She examined that most schizophrenics she studied did not exhibit enough mental stability to produce original ideas, rather purely bizarre ones. In fact, she believed that mental impairments associated with schizophrenia inhibited one’s creative abilities. While I see her point in this, I know that schizophrenia affects individuals on a spectrum. Therefor, in certain cases, I believe more research can be done on this aspect. Andreason also only studied writers, which can not hardly account for the wide span of creative fields. But, she did make headway with the assertion of a true biological connection between creativity and a mental disorder. This got the ball rolling in the scientific community, prompting more researchers to explore the link.
Dr. Alice Flaherty of Harvard Medical School wrote a paper in 2005 expounding upon the link between creativity and mental illness. I found his paper intriguing, due to his delving into the mind of a schizophrenics as well as those with