From 99u: There’s a reason jazz wasn’t taught at the New England Conservatory before Gunther Schuller arrived in the 1960s. Artists are protective of their work, and classical musicians are no exception; many faculty members at the renowned Boston institution didn’t want the whims of jazz improvisers to “sully” their canon. The traditionalists there believed in an unambiguous divide between the realms of classical and jazz—both for themselves, and for posterity. But Gunther Schuller, who passed away on June 21 of this year, wasn’t having it.
From Change This: Over the next few years, you will experience up to 100 transformative moments every year. 100 moments yearly that may or may not determine the future, but will most certainly reveal your future. Your future reveals itself only after you choose how you will face every disruption and opportunity that comes your way.
What goes into your choices — your beliefs, unconscious biases, values and emotions — drives every situation as much as any disruption that is thrown at you. The future is personal.
From Scientific American: The creative process — from the first drop of paint on the canvas to the art exhibition — involves a mix of emotions, drives, skills, and behaviors. It'd be miraculous if these emotions, traits and behaviors didn't often conflict with each other during the creative process, creating inner and outer tension. Indeed, creative people are often seen as weird, odd, and eccentric.
From Angie McArthur and Dr. Dawna Markova at Change This: The most significant gift our species brings to the world is our capacity to think. The most significant danger our species brings to the world is our inability to think with those who think differently. It is clear that to stay competitive in our global economy, we must learn how to think collaboratively and innovatively. But if you have ever sat through a mind-numbing meeting or tried to influence a colleague’s view on a project or had a recurring argument with a family member or struggled to participate in a community project, you have recognized that most of us actually don’t know how to think well together.
We take for granted that intelligence occurs within our own minds. We don’t realize that it also occurs between us. What keeps us from tapping into that intelligence and communicating effectively is that most of us don’t know how to think with people who think differently than we do. We habitually misread people and therefore miscommunicate with them.
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From Brian Grazer at ChangeThis: Curiosity is an incredible tool. But what I realized, what really inspired my desire to write A Curious Mind with Charles Fishman, is that most people don’t use their curiosity with a sense of purpose and understanding—with insight about curiosity itself.
Curiosity is the key to understanding people’s personalities and motivations.
Curiosity is a vital storytelling tool—and storytelling is the best way to engage and persuade other people, in your work life and your personal life.
Curiosity is a fantastic source of courage.
Curiosity is the best, most under-used management tool—a great way to create engagement in your fellow works, but also a great way to transmit values and priorities.
Curiosity is the spark for creativity and innovation, the best long-term investment you can make.
Curiosity is the best way to stay connected to those who are most important to you.
Curiosity, in fact, turns out to be a quiet superpower that all of us have. You don’t need an Ivy League education to use it, you don’t need a high-speed Internet connection.
What’s curiosity done for you lately? We’re betting it hasn’t done enough.
Throughout his long career, Brian Grazer has made a sideline practice of informally interviewing intriguing people from all walks of life. “For 35 years, I’ve been tracking down people about whom I was curious and asking if I could sit down with them for an hour,” he explains. These conversations, and the motivations behind them, are explored in Grazer’s new book “A Curious Mind." In it, the authors discuss the depths and potential of curiosity and share the experiences Grazer has had sitting down with Barack Obama, Michael Jackson, Norman Mailer, Andy Warhol, Isaac Asimov and countless others.
Whether these conversations, and the human subjects involved, were hopeful, scary, inspiring, courageous, covert or comical, they were always illuminating; and Grazer hopes the book will spur others to begin asking more questions. “Curiosity isn’t just impertinent, it’s insurgent,” he says. “It’s revolutionary.”
From Fast Company: These are the shows, movies, scenes, performers, web series and everything lovable in creativity this past year.