Living, as we do, in a time in which a U.S. president anoints himself “a very stable genius”, we are particularly appreciative of Eric Weiner, a former foreign correspondent for NPR who writes with humility and humor, as he brings us along with him on his travels to times and places that produced genius.
Beginning with Athens in the Golden age, and ending with Palo Alto in the Silicon age, Weiner steps lightly through a most serious and fascinating topic, aided and supplemented with the latest social science research on creativity and its cultivation.
The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places
(Simon and Schuster, 2016) is an intellectual odyssey that examines the connection between our surroundings and our most innovative ideas, and has fun doing it. What inspires genius? Why do certain urban settings – and certain historical challenges – foster innovation?
Would geniuses like Socrates, Michelangelo, Einstein and Disney have flourished, had they found themselves in other locations and other historical circumstances?
Renee Garfinkel, Ph.D. is a psychologist, writer, Middle East television commentator and host of The New Books Network’s Van Leer Jerusalem Series on Ideas. Write her at email@example.com or tweet @embracingwisdom.