3
   

The 'genius' figure.

 
 
Reply Fri 5 Nov, 2010 08:52 am
For example, Picasso, Schoenberg, Einstein, etc.
I'll make a very very rough observation that they don't exist post C1950 in the same manner that they used to pre C1950. In the saturated half of the 20th Century I think it can be stated that it would be harder to 'cut through' a discipline and replace a paradigm with the same effect it would have had in the first half of the 20th Century and the years preceding this; new 'trends' do not cut so much impact the later in time we go.
Is it the case that the above is true, and the 'genius figures' said to spawn new thought paradigms in their respective fields cannot exist in the same sense post 1950 because of the population increase and the changes in communication, OR-
Is it the case that the 'space' around the pre-1950 'genius figure' and smaller amount of surrounding information allowed the historians/academics to sweep existing information into a grander narrative which ignores a few smaller sources?

I suspect it is a mixture of both, but without the insight into how academic work is fabricated I can't say how it is a mixture of both.
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fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 5 Nov, 2010 09:07 am
@The Pentacle Queen,
If you are correct in your thesis (and I'm not sure that you are) it might be argued (1) that recognition as a "genius" in the sciences at least is extremely short lived due to the speed of communication and cross fertilization nowadays and (2) scientific subjects have expanded exponentially in fine detail such that it is hard for a single individual to have a non-parochial impact.(But I can think of notable exceptions).
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Fri 5 Nov, 2010 09:14 am
You need a working definition of genius for this to have any real meaning. Nikola Tesla was a genius, and the invention of the a cost-effective, reliable generator of alternating current in conjunction with George Westinghouse, and in particular Tesla's invention of induction motors (which removed the last objection to the widespread us of alternating current) rank far above any contributions of the people you have named to the way of life we now enjoy.

If you can let us know what you mean by genius, it would help.
spidergal
 
  1  
Reply Fri 5 Nov, 2010 09:31 am
That's right. Define genius.
0 Replies
 
The Pentacle Queen
 
  1  
Reply Fri 5 Nov, 2010 08:18 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

You need a working definition of genius for this to have any real meaning. Nikola Tesla was a genius, and the invention of the a cost-effective, reliable generator of alternating current in conjunction with George Westinghouse, and in particular Tesla's invention of induction motors (which removed the last objection to the widespread us of alternating current) rank far above any contributions of the people you have named to the way of life we now enjoy.

If you can let us know what you mean by genius, it would help.


Yeah sorry, that was vague. I meant figures in the arts/academia.. People whose contributions to their fields have been canonised by academics.
0 Replies
 
The Pentacle Queen
 
  1  
Reply Fri 5 Nov, 2010 08:41 pm
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

If you are correct in your thesis (and I'm not sure that you are) it might be argued (1) that recognition as a "genius" in the sciences at least is extremely short lived due to the speed of communication and cross fertilization nowadays and (2) scientific subjects have expanded exponentially in fine detail such that it is hard for a single individual to have a non-parochial impact.(But I can think of notable exceptions).



Thank you Fresco, that puts it very succuinctly. What are the arguments against the suggestion?
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 01:41 am
@The Pentacle Queen,
Clearly there have been "geniuses" post 1950...Richard Feynman, Noam Chomsky (arguably), Maturana (for some),and various mathematicians (whose names escape me for the moment). I think that genius = "IQ +paradigmatic impact + practical impact + degree of recognition", and it is the last two which are open to debate.
0 Replies
 
HexHammer
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 04:02 am
@The Pentacle Queen,
The Pentacle Queen wrote:
they don't exist post C1950 in the same manner that they used to pre C1950.
Rubbish, ofcause they do, they just drown in the crowd of ill promoted idiots.
It's all about PR these days, less about skill.

Besides, NDA's are keeping the lid on most of the louding of multigenious's skills.
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 04:40 am
@HexHammer,
HexHammer wrote:
ofcause

the louding of multigenious's skills.


I see you are an English major.
HexHammer
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 05:05 am
@contrex,
contrex wrote:

HexHammer wrote:
ofcause

the louding of multigenious's skills.


I see you are an English major.
And you, Major Sarcasm?
djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 05:14 am
@HexHammer,
i believe he's General Knowledge
djjd62
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 05:15 am
no such thing as genius, like beauty it's in the eye of the beholder
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 05:30 am
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:
no such thing as genius, like beauty it's in the eye of the beholder


Well said. I find the definition of genius offered here to be too narrow, and too subjective. I also find Fresco's comment about the practical value of genius to be silly. For example, Leonardo da Vinci is generally accounted to be a genius, and he spent nearly the whole of his working life proposing solutions to practical problems. That the level of technological sophistication of his day prevented him from producing many of his ideas does not alter that he was routinely employed to find practical solutions to real world problems.

Dj is definitely correct that asserting genius is a subjective statement.
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 05:47 am
@djjd62,
djjd62 wrote:

i believe he's General Knowledge


I am the Colonel Of Truth.
Francis
 
  0  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 05:51 am
@contrex,
Can I be Sir Gent?
contrex
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 07:11 am
@Francis,
Francis wrote:

Can I be Sir Gent?


Indeed you can. Although I might send for Corporal Pun-ishment. Personally I think that Colonel Sanders was a genius.

Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 07:14 am
@contrex,
contrex wrote:
Personally I think that Colonel Sanders was a genius.


He certainly did well for himself. He sold out for a couple of million in 1964, when a million dollars was really worth something.
0 Replies
 
The Pentacle Queen
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 10:14 pm
@Setanta,
Setanta wrote:

djjd62 wrote:
no such thing as genius, like beauty it's in the eye of the beholder


Well said. I find the definition of genius offered here to be too narrow, and too subjective. I also find Fresco's comment about the practical value of genius to be silly. For example, Leonardo da Vinci is generally accounted to be a genius, and he spent nearly the whole of his working life proposing solutions to practical problems. That the level of technological sophistication of his day prevented him from producing many of his ideas does not alter that he was routinely employed to find practical solutions to real world problems.

Dj is definitely correct that asserting genius is a subjective statement.


Genius was a bad turn of phrase. I don't think it's silly, he's talking about what might be classed as a 'genius figure' in academia if we take the notion loosely not what constitutes as one exactly.

I too feel the phrase too subjective. However, if we're talking about people canonised by academics it becomes a slightly different issue, still subjective, but also (in the humanities fields at least) created by the paradigms academics all jump on like a bangwagon.
The Pentacle Queen
 
  1  
Reply Sat 6 Nov, 2010 10:30 pm
@The Pentacle Queen,
Haha, meant bandwagon, although the phrase has the same effect.
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Nov, 2010 05:19 am
@The Pentacle Queen,
Bangwagon . . . i like that . . . that'll spell home run in the hearts and minds of Mr. and Mrs. Front Porch.
0 Replies
 
 

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