Finished Reading: Out of Our Minds

10 Apr

I’ve just finished reading one of Sir Ken Robinson’s books, Out of Our Minds. You may have noticed that I’ve been posting quotes from each chapter of the book; this is mainly for me to quickly reread when the inspiration is rather lacking.

For anyone who has ever found a lack of satisfaction with the way the world views creativity, this book is for you. Robinson’s insights on the nature of creativity and learning in personal, educational, and corporate environments are invaluable to anyone seeking to improve the creative outlooks of both themselves and the people around them. We all have the potential to be creative in our own unique way, and the world of tomorrow can only be realized when we all learn to unlock this potential.

The relationship of the arts and the sciences is heavily discussed in this book, a topic that I find particularly interesting. Academics over the past century has certainly illusioned us with respect to this relationship, placing science and other ‘academic’ disciplines on a pedestal while casting the arts out as extraneous forms of expression; what everyone must realize is that the two areas of study are intimately related, and that both sides inform each other in crucial ways.

Cultural and technological progress are not separate things. In fact, I am of the opinion that neither is possible without the other. Engineers and scientists cannot afford to remove themselves so far from the very thing that gives humans their special place in the world: emotion and feeling. Humans are more than just science,  and to forget this simple fact would be a dire mistake. Science is itself a form of expression; art is a way of understanding the world. Rather than place one above the other, we must come to appreciate how these two can come together to create a unique and truly enlightened perspective.


One response to “Finished Reading: Out of Our Minds

  1. (Taco)Supreme Being

    April 10, 2012 at 10:05 PM

    Sounds like a great read! I completely agree that we shouldn’t have such concrete separations of the arts and sciences. As you said, Science is another form of human expression. A science can be referred to as an explanation (or expression) of how the world works— our understanding of the world. Similarly, a painting or a song is an artist’s expression of how they see or understand the world. It’s unfortunate that many people refuse to see that what makes us human is the combination of our “cultural and technological progress”. So many in these areas of study look down upon those standing at the opposite end claiming one doesn’t think while the other doesn’t feel.I am reminded of how the Greek philosophers were pioneers in Math and Science as well. It’s a funny thing where the world has come to now. The classrooms are more focused on yielding high standardized testing scores. College students are more eager to learn how to find well-paying jobs than to seek knowledge for the sake of learning. It’s sad that many education systems demand creativity from its students, but fail to provide them with the proper environment to thrive creatively. Even the very nature of grades stints a child’s desire of pure learning. Art and Music programs are being cut left in right in the schools because they simply are not given enough support and funding. I hope that others will feel compelled to read this interesting book. I know I’m adding it to the list!


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