Browse Category: Jonah Lehrer

Imagine by Jonah Lehrer

I finally read Imagine.
Everyone on earth has probably heard of this book.  I know I saw it on a couple blogs before a friend recommended it to me, and I finally picked it up. 

The book fits nicely into the Malcomb Gladwell-esque category of pop-psychology, which I’ve found that I really like.  I don’t get into straight psychology books, but when you mix it up with parables about how people do their work, that’s interesting.
Imagine starts off by talking about Bob Dylan, and how he got sick of his music and his fame, went away from it all and stopped trying to make music. Once he stopped trying, he made the best music of his career.  This reminded me of this quote that Austin Kleon posted on tumblr a while back, “Go to the fucking yard sale, buy a fucking guitar, start a band with your fucking friends, get in the garage and fucking SUCK, and work on it until you fucking make great music and become the biggest band in the world. And when you become the biggest band in the world, you’ll be like, “Goddamn, wasn’t the garage fun?”— Dave Grohl. The Dylan story illustrates some things that can aid creativity – changing scenery and quitting.
Imagine goes on to discuss innovation at 3M, poets addicted to Benzedrine, Milton Glaser, Yo-Yo Ma, and many other creative people. There’s also mention of creativity in fields that you wouldn’t think of as creative – the ways creativity is useful, even for people who aren’t artists or musicians.  
Imagine is well worth a read for anyone interested in creativity and how creativity applies to more people and situations than you’d think.

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