Welcome to psycho-analytical aesthetics, with mythology and philosophy woven in!
I bought this book around 3 years ago, drawn in by the counter-intuitive title but very curious. And it certainly didn't dissapoint. My first attempts at reading it made clear just how challenging a read it would be (written in a somewhat circular style, with complex connections and layers), and I only made it a third of the way through.
But at last, I've got to the end, and so much resonated, even though the language is steeped in expert psycho-analytics.
I feel my life's journey has been in a recovery from a very analytical orientated subject education (I was naturally strongest in maths and the sciences, but I like to think that doesn't mean to say I wasn't interested in the arts)... and the language that the book provides, illuminates the fundamentals of our faculties of perception in the creative experience. In particular, the notion of "syncretic" thinking as the opposite of analytical thinking is very compelling (and is a more comprehensive concept than just 'intuition').
A few points that I'll develop further in later edits:
- It takes stock of the failures in the past in achieving conscensus for a theoretical framework of creativity
- The imposibility to hold simulataneous focus on our contrasting perceptive systems, is evoked, that resonates with my appreciation of the philosophical realms of contrasting validity (by philosophers from Wilber the Kant; the arts, morals and sciences).
- Triads such as that of ego, id and superego; or differentiation, integration, re-introjection are described, that also resonate with my work in narrative interpretation through triads.
This book is an incredible landmark in the "consilience" (unification of knowledge) in the understanding of human creativity...with connections I could see to Scharmer's Theory U, Campbell's Hero's Journey, but based on compelling psycho-analytic interpretation.
A call to the importance of the imagination, even for subjects such as mathmatics, are super relevant to my personal life, and my hopes in the education of our children.
More comments to come to this post!
*An interesting Integral Theory related blog post and comments on looking at Theory U and the Hero's Journey can be found here