Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Creativity, Theories of
JoAnn Franklin Klinker
Creativity resists a commonly accepted definition. What is common to definitions of creativity are the concepts of novelty and value. For a response or product to be deemed creative, it must be atypical, unusual, unique plus effective, and useful in addressing a problem. Creativity is also difficult to study because the process or act stems from ideas. Ideas are intangible and ephemeral, relying on expression to bring them to life. Ideas also act like viruses in that they are plentiful and rely on hosts to survive. To carry the metaphor further, the environment in which ideas find themselves determines whether their infection is positive or negative. Creativity also relies on environment for its validity. A best-seller novel is not necessarily more creative than another novel, yet the culture embraces the one and not the other. A poem is as different from a sculpture as ice is to fire, yet both ...