August 23rd, 2012

talent, pencil

Review: Out of Our Minds - Learning to be Creative by Ken Robinson

Out of Our Minds: Learning to Be CreativeOut of Our Minds: Learning to Be Creative by Ken Robinson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

If you've had the pleasure of hearing Ken Robinson speak (or seen his TED talk), you've already experienced most of the best bits of this book. This is a very entertaining book, with an important message, but in my case, I felt it was preaching to the choir. It is certainly nice to have someone saying that creativity is important in nearly all fields of endeavor, not just the arts; that creativity is a basic human skill that everyone can develop and nurture, not just special people; and that modern Western school systems do a terrible job of nurturing creativity in their students. But I believed all of these things before I read the book, and I can't escape the nagging feeling that the people who most need to be convinced of these things wouldn't read this book and wouldn't be convinced by it if they did.

Also, I do think the subtitle, "Learning to Be Creative," is a bit misleading. This is more a book about how institutions and cultures do or don't encourage creativity, and less about how individuals can be more creative.

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