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  4-fold character of genius
gary e. davis
May 2020
Proximal attention in relation to primordial attention is analogous to the differ-ence between self representation interpersonally (s/p differentiated) and reflec-tion about the full psychality of oneSelf (S/s differentiated).

To pose a character (s/p differentiality) is no pretense to articulate a fundamental conceptuality (S/s differentiality). For example, coming to understand a difference between authorship of a given work and the author’s public discussion of it is no pretense to articulate the relationship of the given work to the Work leading to it.

To characterize a fundamental conceptuality (S/s differentiality) is not yet to explicate it. For example, to characterize authorial Work (biography of the career) is not yet to do a formal genealogy of authorial Creativity (which maybe only the author can do).

The fundamental conceptuality that appeals to me—which has by now survived many years of dwelling with others’ work—involves Robert J. Sternberg’s inte-gration of empirical approaches to intelligence (over severeal decades); Howard Gardner’s well-tested approach to intelligence (which Sternberg appropriates) and his approach to creativity; the conception of creativity by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (“chick-zent-me-high”), whose decades of work draws on Howard Gardner’s work; and David L. Hull’s philosophy of conceptual evolving. But a conceptuality which “involves” these influences doesn’t intimate how. Yet, this may be useful:
  1. A gifted sensibility individuates tenacious curiosity (joy in learning),
    which leads to:
  2. exuberant imaginativity of Talent actualization, especially insatiable inquiriality (i.e, engagement with inquiry). This leads to:
  3. flourishive insightfulness relative to Domain mastery. At best, unprecedented inventiveness of the Work results in durable originality.
  4. Resultant public work is regarded as importantly appealing innovation
    in its Field.
That apparently vague sequence depends on specific approaches to such questions as: (1) What is giftedness? What is the best theory of intelligence (sensibility)? How does self-enhancive interest sustain curiosity over stages of individuation? (2) How does high creativity work as extended process of inquiry? (3) What is insightfulness? What is domain-transformative innovation? (4) How is extended Work transposed into accessible and potentially influential works? What kinds of influence are lasting? How does influence enable work in its wake?

But no alleged “genius” thinks of themself (herself, himself) as actually that. Like highly admirable exemplarity of truly virtuous persons, the assessment belongs to others. (No vurtuous person calls themself virtuous.) Other persons may be surprised by the apparent unpretentiousness of truly “brilliant” persons because, to the Worker, particular works speak for themselves; and the author / artist / scientist wants to move on by learning from a work’s unforeseen lack of influence and criticism.

Earlier, I discussed this kind of context—not relative to a notion of “genius”—as a 3-fold (relative here to 2—4 above) there combining 1 and 2 here.

next—> telic genius of being human



  Be fair. © 2020, gary e. davis