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Thread: Risk scores for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder predict creativity.

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.

    Risk scores for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder predict creativity.

    See:
    https://www.nature.com/articles/t

    I suspect this is true, although I don't know if they've proved it.

    "We tested whether polygenic risk scores for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder would predict creativity. Higher scores were associated with artistic society membership or creative profession in both Icelandic (P = 5.2 × 10−6 and 3.8 × 10−6 for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder scores, respectively) and replication cohorts (P = 0.0021 and 0.00086). This could not be accounted for by increased relatedness between creative individuals and those with psychoses, indicating that creativity and psychosis share genetic roots."





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    2 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    There are many other studies with similar findings.

    https://royalsocietypublishing.org/d...rspb.2005.3349

    There is an evolutionary puzzle surrounding the persistence of schizophrenia, since it is substantially heritable and associated with sharply reduced fitness. However, some of the personality traits which are predictive of schizophrenia are also associated with artistic creativity. Geoffrey Miller has proposed that artistic creativity functions to attract mates. Here, we investigate the relationship between schizotypal personality traits, creative activity, and mating success in a large sample of British poets, visual artists, and other adults. We show that two components of schizotypy are positively correlated with mating success. For one component, this relationship is mediated by creative activity. Results are discussed in terms of the evolution of human creativity and the genesis of schizophrenia.
    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/jocb.11

    It has been argued that creativity evolved, at least in part, through sexual selection to attract mates. Recent research lends support to this view and has also demonstrated a link between certain dimensions of schizotypy, creativity, and short‐term mating. The current study delves deeper into these relationships by focusing on engagement in creative activity and employing an expansive set of personality and mental health measures (Five Factor Model, schizotypy, anxiety, and depression). A general tendency to engage in everyday forms of creative activity was related to number of sexual partners within the past year in males only. Furthermore, schizotypy, anxiety, and Neuroticism were all indirectly related to short‐term mating success, again for males only. The study provides additional support for predictions made by sexual selection theory that men have a higher drive for creative display, and that creativity is linked with higher short‐term mating success. The study also provides support for the contention that certain forms of mental illness may still exist in the gene pool because particular personality traits associated with milder forms of mental illness (i.e., Neuroticism & schizotypy) are also associated directly with creativity and indirectly with short‐term mating success.
    https://www.sciencedirect.com/scienc...9188690000204X

    Previous researchers have suggested that there might be an association between psychotic traits and creativity, and that this association might explain the retention of psychosis genes in the gene pool. A multidimensional measure of schizotypal traits, the Oxford-Liverpool Inventory of Feelings and Experiences, and Torrance tests of divergent thinking were administered to humanities and creative arts students. Students in the creative arts scored higher on the unusual experiences dimension of schizotypy in comparison with the humanities students. For the students as a whole, divergent thinking scores were predicted by scores on the unusual experiences dimension of schizotypy. Further analyses suggested that this association was accounted for by degree subject (humanities vs creative arts), and no direct association between schizotypy and divergent thinking could be demonstrated in either group of students. However, the unusual experiences dimension was a significant predictor of engagement in the verbal arts, even when degree subject was controlled for. The findings indicate that schizotypy may play a role in determining creative pursuits, but does not contribute directly to divergent thinking. Future studies should explore both direct and indirect paths linking schizotypy to creativity.
    I could quote you several more studies if you were interested. Of course, publication bias remains a problem in the field, but, until a meta-analysis provides clear information, I'm satisfied to accept the above findings at face value, particularly given the obvious theoretical reasons to expect some such relationship:

    1. At rates near 1 in 200 worldwide, Schizophrenia has a high prevalence for such a debilitating disorder. Given the choice between blindness, deafness, quadriplegia, and schizophrenia, no one familiar with these four disabilities would choose schizophrenia without being schizophrenic to begin with. (My suggestion: blindness. People can be very friendly, and it's easy to avoid unpleasant chores by pretending you have no idea where anything is.)

    2. Both Schizophrenia and creativity break from reality, in the first case, totally, and in the second, occasionally, while maintaining the ability to return.

    3. I have schizophrenic relatives, and I can assure you that I am every bit as imaginative as I appear.

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    1 out of 2 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Vandemonian View Post
    There are many other studies with similar findings.







    I could quote you several more studies if you were interested. Of course, publication bias remains a problem in the field, but, until a meta-analysis provides clear information, I'm satisfied to accept the above findings at face value, particularly given the obvious theoretical reasons to expect some such relationship:

    1. At rates near 1 in 200 worldwide, Schizophrenia has a high prevalence for such a debilitating disorder. Given the choice between blindness, deafness, quadriplegia, and schizophrenia, no one familiar with these four disabilities would choose schizophrenia without being schizophrenic to begin with. (My suggestion: blindness. People can be very friendly, and it's easy to avoid unpleasant chores by pretending you have no idea where anything is.)

    2. Both Schizophrenia and creativity break from reality, in the first case, totally, and in the second, occasionally, while maintaining the ability to return.

    3. I have schizophrenic relatives, and I can assure you that I am every bit as imaginative as I appear.
    I'm going to read the papers carefully. I wonder if the correlation is stronger for certain types of "creativity". Is it different for writers versus musicians versus visual artists? What about creativity in the sciences?

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    Schizotypal creativity in the sciences is unlikely. I would expect it across the arts, since nearly identical personality traits predict success across artistic fields, but scientific creativity taps into somewhat different traits. I'll try to explain:

    According to the dimensional model of schizophrenia, schizophrenics exist on the extreme end of a spectrum consisting of people who are unremarkable --> odd --> schizoid --> schizophrenic. Numerous scales, such as the Creative Experiences Questionnaire and the Multi-Modality Unusual Sensory Experiences Inventory are used to measure this predisposition, finding relatives of schizophrenics score higher than controls. When these scales are investigated along with other scales measuring creativity, it is found that they relate much more to the emotional and aesthetic aspects of creativity, are largely unrelated to intellectual aspects of creativity, and are slighthly negatively related to intellectual ability itself (IQ). This is not to say that there's no room for psychoticism in the sciences; speaking offhandedly, Isaac Newton was probably on that schizotypal spectrum. But I doubt it helps in science nearly as much as in aesthetic fields.

    I'll attach two relevant studies to another post in an hour or so when I able to locate them.

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    DeYoung, C. G., Grazioplene, R. G., & Peterson, J. B. (2012). From madness to genius: The Openness/Intellect trait domain as a paradoxical simplex. Journal of Research in Personality, 46(1), 63-78.

    (The above study establishes the similarity of schizotypal characteristics to the emotional and aesthetic dimensions of a broad personality trait referred to as Openness to Experience. If you're unfamiliar with Openness, you should browse around the wikipedia article - Openness is one of the most firmly established and best-researched traits uncovered by psychology, and the link between Openness and creativity is so well known as to be not worth discussing.)


    Kaufman, S. B., Quilty, L. C., Grazioplene, R. G., Hirsh, J. B., Gray, J. R., Peterson, J. B., & DeYoung, C. G. (2016). Openness to experience and intellect differentially predict creative achievement in the arts and sciences. Journal of personality, 84(2), 248-258.

    (This second study substantiates the intuitively obvious finding that scientific creativity is predicted by the intellectual component of Openness, while the emotional, aesthetic, or experiential component predicts creativity in the arts.)


    Miller, G. F., & Tal, I. R. (2007). Schizotypy versus openness and intelligence as predictors of creativity. Schizophrenia research, 93(1-3), 317-324.

    (I wanted to include this because it finds no relationship between schizotypy and figural or verbal creativity, and thus calls the link between schizotypy and creativity into question. There are

    1. many studies showing schizotypes have high short-term mating success, implying some evolutionary "use" for schizotypy
    2. many studies showing Openness to Experience breaks into an artistic and scientific side,
    3. a few studies finding schizotypy is related to the artistic side of Openness, and
    4. a few studies finding a direct relationship between schizotypy and creativity, such as the one you posted at the start of this thread.

    But, the strength of the third relation simply may not be strong enough to result in a robust relationship between schizotypy and creativity.)

    The soft sciences are still developing. Those fields have uncovered both interesting and important information, but they're also riddled with false positives. Trust psychological studies at your own risk.

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    Very interesting looking post and I must appraise your efforts to write this post.

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