Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer
Reviewed by Tom Lombardo

"...every creative journey begins with a problem..." Jonah Lehrer

In spite of the fact that Lehrer fell from grace and lost credibility for admitting that he concocted presumably factually accurate stories in his book Imagine, I still think that his book is a valuable and informative discussion of the nature of creativity.

Lehrer pulls together a variety of ideas on both individual and social creativity. Of particular note, he considers at length the "hard work" versus "sudden inspiration" explanations of creativity, the "immersion" versus "distraction" theories, and the creative genius versus creative culture perspectives.

Though I think that Lehrer gets a bit fuzzy and muddled on the relationship of the brain, the mind, and consciousness, and simplifies the right versus left cerebral hemisphere roles in human psychology, he does include a good amount of stimulating discussion on the brain and creativity. His discussion of West's research into the relative creativity of cities versus corporations (which can be corroborated and verified through some independent research on the reader's part) is also very enlightening.

If nothing else, reading Lehrer's book stimulated me into further articulating my own general theory of creativity (see my article on creativity) which I have now incorporated into my "Psychology of the Future" course. Creativity is a critical theme in both understanding wisdom and heightening future consciousness: Wisdom, as manifested in wise individuals, is a highly creative capacity and the future, for sure, is fundamentally an act of creation.