Thursday 18 December 2014

Creativity is transcendentally the opposite of fashion

Creativity is nowadays frequently confused with - but must be distinguished from,  fashion - because the one is essentially good (although may be used for evil), while the other is essentially evil (although may well have good aspects).

So to regard the 'design' of modern products - such as Apple computers - as prime examples of creativity is strictly mistaken; such design has the imperative of novelty, which makes it primarily fashion - and creativity is an optional extra.

True creativity is about reality - and qualities such as functionality and excellence; but fashion is about the requirement for novelty and change.


I think it probable that high creativity is a group selected trait - which means that (on average) it benefits group reproductive success rather than the individual; many products of creativity have the effect of promoting group cohesion and cooperation.

Fashion, however, is a luxury good and parasitic on the group functionality - because its changes and reversals tend to promote inter--group conflict and damage group cohesion.


Real creativity springs from the individual's motivations, drives and internal reward system: creativity is natural and spontaneous for the truly creative person - although it can, of course, be suppressed - by contrast fashion, design, novelty.

So to control creativity the group would actively need to crush it; otherwise the creative person just will be creative.

Fashion, on the other hand, is done for the usual reasons of external reward: status, salary, sex and so on. Fashion needs to be incentivised; designers need to be paid; recurrent novelty is a consequence of reward; perpetual change is driven by paid managers (and managers do not manage unless they are 'paid' in some valued currency).  


Therefore, psychological tests of the kind that ask subjects to list as many uses as possible for a stick or a hook or a ball are not asking about real creativity, but about something more like fashion - because they are measuring novelty but not measuring functionality or usefulness.

And the Big Five psychological trait of  'Openness to experience' is essentially about novelty/ fashion, rather than excellence/ creativity.

But Eysenck's personality trait of Psychoticism (flawed as it is) is essentially trying to probe and quantify real creativity, not fashion.


Fashion, novelty, change... these are intrinsic to modernity and have become the primary attribute of secular Leftism: they are more dominant now than ever before.

But real creativity is in a bad way in the modern world. Major geniuses have all-but disappeared, and minor geniuses are ignored, their work (even when potentially useful to group 'fitness') is attacked, suppressed, made illegal; creative people are punished not rewarded.

So real creativity is one kind of thing - being scape-goated and declining fast; while the pseudo-creativity of fashion - which is celebrated and expanding - is a very different thing.