Research provides more neuroscientific explanation for the potential links between mental health and mental illness to creativity.
A press release reports:
“By studying receptors in the brain, researchers at Karolinska Institute have managed to show that the dopamine system in healthy, highly creative people is similar in some respects to that seen in people with schizophrenia.
“High creative skills have been shown to be somewhat more common in people who have mental illness in the family.
“Creativity is also linked to a slightly higher risk of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Certain psychological traits, such as the ability to make unusual or bizarre associations are also shared by schizophrenics and healthy, highly creative people.”
Continued in article Creativity linked to mental health and illness.
[Painting: “Mercury” by David Marsh, from article Schizophrenic Artist’s Paintings ‘Out of This World’ at HealthyPlace.com.]
An article in The Guardian reports on research on schizophrenia, sexual activity, thinking and artists:
A survey comparing mental health and the number of sexual partners among the general population, artists and schizophrenics found that artists are more likely to share key behavioural traits with schizophrenics, and that they have on average twice as many sexual partners as the rest of the population.
Daniel Nettle, a psychologist at Newcastle University, and Helen Clegg, at the Open University in Milton Keynes, carried out the survey…
On analysing 425 responses, the psychologists found that artists and schizophrenics scored equally high on “unusual cognition”, a trait which gives rise to a greater tendency to feel in between reality and a dream state, or to feel overwhelmed by one’s own thoughts.
But the artists and schizophrenics scored very differently on another measure called introvertive anhedonia, which is characterised by social withdrawal and emotional emptiness. Unlike schizophrenics, artists, in line with the general population, scored very low.
According to Dr Nettle, the results suggest that the creativity of some artists is fuelled by the unique world view mental illness can provide, but without the completely debilitating aspects of the condition. Instead, the artists are able to direct their creativity into artistic projects.
From Mental illness link to art and sex, The Guardian [UK]
Daniel Nettle is author of Strong Imagination: Madness, Creativity and Human Nature.
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Article publié pour la première fois le 13/04/2015