|a window in The Cathedral Church of Saint John the Divine|
The truth, of course, is that creativity is a by-product of mastery of the sort that is cultivated through long practice. It seems to be built up through submission (think musician practicing scales, or Einstein learning tensor algebra). Identifying creativity with freedom harmonizes quite well with the culture of the new capitalism in which the imperative of flexibility precludes dwelling in any task long enough to develop real competence. Such competence is the condition not only of genuine creativity but for economic independence such as the tradesman enjoys.
So the liberationists' ethic of what is sometimes called "the 1968 generation" perhaps paved the way for our increasing dependence. We're primed to respond to any invocation of the aesthetics of individuality . The rhetoric of freedom pleases our ears. The simulacrum of independent thought and action that goes by the name of "creativity" trips so easily off the tongues of spokespeople for the corporate counter-culture, and if we're not paying attention such usage might influence our career pans. The term invokes our powerful tendency to narcissism and in doing so greases the skids into work that is not what we had hoped."
-- from Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry into the Value of Work by Matthew B. Crawford
Linked to Lovely Photo Wednesday.