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American Psychological Association

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doi: 10.1037/a0022488


Reviews the book, The dark side of creativity by David H. Cropley, Arthur J. Cropley, James C. Kaufman, and Mark A. Runco (see record 2010-16278-000). Theory and research on creativity clearly address how breakthrough ideas are formed and what happens to them next, but the present state of creativity research needs a few breakthrough ideas of its own. The Dark Side of Creativity , edited by David Cropley, Arthur Cropley, James Kaufman, and mark Runco, has hit that target. It also resonates with contemporary concerns about creativity and technology. There is a long-standing ethic in engineering that a technology itself is neither good nor bad; it is what one does with technology that can go either way. Coeditor Mark Runco takes this position in Chapter 2, maintaining that creativity itself has no dark side; it is the product of that creativity that can be light or dark. Product in this context is the actual implementation of the ideas produced by the creative processes that preceded it. Part of the delay in recognizing the presence of the dark side can be traced to a societal bias toward regarding “good” things as “creative” and treating things that people find morally objectionable as “not creative.” The Dark Side of Creativity is a refreshing book with original insights. I found it easy to go beyond its boundaries and connect to other related ideas about creativity that have been circulating lately. I would recommend the book to anyone interested in creativity. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved)


Accepted version. PsycCRITIQUES, Volume 56, No. 7 (2011). DOI: 10.1037/a0022488 © 2011 American Psychological Association. Used with permission.

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