The Creativity of Richard David Precht. A Psychological Perspective on the German Author and Philosopher


Term Paper, 2017
15 Pages, Grade: 2.0

Excerpt

II
II
Content
TABLES AND FIGURES ... III
1
INTRODUCTION ... 1
2
INFORMATION ABOUT RICHARD DAVID PRECHT ... 2
2.1
P
RECHT
'
S WORK
... 2
2.2
P
RECHT
'
S PRIVATE LIFE AND UPBRINGING
... 3
3
THE NATURE VS. NURTURE DEBATE ... 5
4
THE CONTRIBUTION OF INTELLIGENCE ... 6
5
THE CREATIVE PROCESS AND THE MOTIVATION ... 8
6
CONCLUSION ... 9
REFERENCES ... IV

III
Tables and figures
F
IGURE
1:
P
RECHT
'
S PUBLICATIONS SO FAR
(S
OURCE
:
O
WN DEPICTION BASED ON
W
IKIMEDIA
F
OUNDATIONS
I
NC
.,
2017). ... 3
F
IGURE
2:
B
RAIN FUNCTIONS ACCORDING TO
P
RECHT
(S
OURCE
:
O
WN DEPICTION
,
AFTER
Q
UANTUM
H
EALING
,
2017). 6

1
1 Introduction
Despite a certain general knowledge or common sense about what creativity is, the issue of
an exhaustive scientific definition for the term `creativity' is under broad discussion among
scholars (e.g. Runco and Jaeger, 2012). However one definition covering three striking as
pects of creativity is delivered by Gaut (2010, p. 1041), stating that "[...] creativity is the ca
pacity to produce original and valuable items by flair." This reflects the broad thought that
creative ideas have to be to some extend new to their field applied and have to add some
kind of worth, e.g. a rise in productivity, when applied (ibid., pp. 1039 ­ 1040). The interest
ing aspect of this definition is the term of flair, being an umbrella term for the relevant pur
pose, degree of understanding, degree of judgment and evaluative ability directed to the
task at hand (ibid., pp. 1039 ­ 1040). A discipline, that none arguably shows these kinds of
features almost to a greater extent than most other academic disciplines is philosophy (e.g.
Attard, 2013; O'Keefe, n.d.). Therefore the investigation of the psychological underpinnings
of a creative individual taking the profession of a philosopher might be of some value to un
derstand or at least give a brief idea what beliefs and predispositions could, of course among
others, as this is just one example, enable persons to engage and influence public discus
sions and bring new and valuable ideas to the society for the better of its majority.
The individual selected for this case study is the German philosopher, author, speaker and
public intellectual Richard David Precht (RDP). In chapter two of this work, he will be shortly
introduced with special regard on his upbringing and his creative philosophical output. The
forthcoming chapters will be focusing on four main issues regarding the psychological back
ground of RDP's beliefs, his working behavior and outcomes. These issues are namely his
take on the nature vs. nurture debate regarding creativity, his assessment of the value of
intelligence for creativity, his creative process and his motivation to be creatively engaged in
philosophical reasoning and the spread of awareness for several issues. The chapters each
will shortly explain commonly accepted psychological takes on named issues and then will
incorporate RDP's statements made about them and information about him in an attempt to
assess if these concepts are supported or not by his style of working and in his philosophy.

2
2 Information about Richard David Precht
This paragraph covers shortly RDP's work and his private life with special regards on his up
bringing.
2.1 Precht's work
RDP is a German philosopher, publicist, professor for philosophy at two universities and a
public speaker (Wikimedia Foundation Inc., 2017). Despite him being a philosopher by pro
fession, he refers to himself as one of Germany's few public intellectuals (Jung, 2017). He is
often seen as a guest in talk shows with political or sociological topics, making a name for
himself, as a guest that can speak his mind, has a wellfounded opinion on almost every top
ic and can break down complicated issues into well understandable chunks of information.
RDP is known for his works and opinions about topics such as the bourgeois society and its
responsibilities, migration, digitization, education and animal rights (Wikimedia Foundation
Inc., 2017). This broad mixture and his strong opinions about these topics have been con
stantly the area of resentful comments about his work questioning his expertise and ability
to form opinions about topics he has not worked in (SRF Kultur, 2014), being not able how
ever to stop him from speaking his mind.
Despite RDP being a scholar, awarded scientific writer and columnist, he has also published
several fictional books; he refers to as his best works, abandoned by the audience (Wiki
media Foundation Inc., 2017; Jung, 2017). However he is known to the broader public for his
nonfictional books covering philosophical topics such as love, animal rights or selfdiscovery
by explaining existing views and concepts and asking inspiring questions to the reader
(Wikimedia Foundation Inc., 2017). Furthermore he was a freelance TV moderator in the late
2000s and has currently an own talk show in the German TV (ibid.). An Overview of his pub
lished works can be found in figure 1.

3
`
Figure 1: Precht's publications so far (Source: Own depiction based on Wikimedia Foundations Inc.,
2017).
2.2 Precht's private life and upbringing
RDP currently lives with his partner in Düsseldorf. He was married to another woman before
but is now divorced, has three step sons and one son, Oscar, with his current partner. De
spite Oscar, who is in some of RDP's works used as a partner for the protagonist to have
philosophical discussions with, RDP manages well to keep his family out of the media
(WeltN24 GmbH, 2014).
RDP likes animals because they remind him of the close and loving relationship to his grand
father (Jung, 2017), that is why he is collecting dissected birds and has a huge aquarium
(WeltN24 GmbH). He also has a huge love for books, which he shares with his father (Dräger,
2013).
RDP's parents where part of the German counterculture of 1968 (ibid.). They fostered a
style of antiauthoritarian parenting, that put the children on the same level as they were and
made each decision a democratic one or based on the children's ability of selfassessment.
However the y also had strict rules in their parenting style which is usually not common to it
Excerpt out of 15 pages

Details

Title
The Creativity of Richard David Precht. A Psychological Perspective on the German Author and Philosopher
College
University of Malta  (Edward de Bono Institute)
Course
Creativity: Psychological Perspectives
Grade
2.0
Author
Year
2017
Pages
15
Catalog Number
V376082
ISBN (eBook)
9783668530782
ISBN (Book)
9783668530799
File size
850 KB
Language
English
Tags
Precht, Richard David Precht, Psychology, Creativity, Brain, function, mind, intelligence, nature, nurture, motivation, porcess, creative
Quote paper
Felix Zappe (Author), 2017, The Creativity of Richard David Precht. A Psychological Perspective on the German Author and Philosopher, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/376082

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