In this fascinating podcast, Robin Eric Weiner, author, The Geography of Genius, discusses geniuses throughout history, and the patterns, environments, etc. that help them develop.
New York Times bestselling author, Robin Eric Weiner, discusses The Geography of Genius, a stimulating read that takes a look back into history to discover how creative geniuses develop in specific places at extremely specific times.
Weiner states that for the longest time we have been considering geniuses, studying them, but totally missing the point in many ways—that geniuses are not in fact born, but are grown/cultivated. Weiner discusses the various myths about geniuses. He cites the example of Mozart, who was born with talent of course, but Weiner states that it is also critical to think about the facts: that he was born into a musical family in a musically- oriented area, in an extremely musical time in world history. Weiner outlines myth number two: that a genius is created from hard work. Hard work does play a pivotal role, but that’s certainly never enough. Weiner postulates that geniuses are in fact cultivated, that they are not random. And Weiner talks about some of the places and times in the world that produced the world’s most celebrated geniuses.
Weiner discusses the tyranny of expertise—how educated individuals are not allowed to share their ideas freely unless those ideas are 100% in their precise area of expertise. He explains how this often stifles the flow of great ideas. And wrapping up, Weiner talks about how we often romanticize geniuses, but how our perception of geniuses is somewhat like
fashion: it changes over time.