Imaginary worldplay in childhood and maturity and its impact on adult creativity

Michele Root-Bernstein, Robert Root-Bernstein

    Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

    • 19 Citations

    Abstract

    The childhood invention of imaginary worlds or paracosms may prepare for creative endeavor in adulthood. To test hypotheses concerning the incidence of childhood worldplay and its connection to mature work, this study queried MacArthur Fellows, selected for their creativity, and compared them to Michigan State University (MSU) students. Whereas previous research declared paracosm play to be uncommon and associated with the arts, this study found it reasonably common among MSU students (3%-12%), about twice as frequent among MacArthur Fellows (5%-26%), and prevalent in the backgrounds of scientists and social scientists as well as artists. A majority of Fellows with assessed worldplay in childhood reported connections between early paracosm play and mature endeavor. Childhood worldplay deserves further study as early apprenticeship in creative imagination.

    LanguageEnglish (US)
    Pages405-425
    Number of pages21
    JournalCreativity Research Journal
    Volume18
    Issue number4
    DOIs
    StatePublished - 2006

    Profile

    Creativity
    Maturity
    Childhood
    Students
    Imagination
    Art
    Incidence
    Research
    Imaginary World
    Invention
    Hypothesis Test
    Adulthood
    Artist
    Apprenticeship
    Study Art

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Psychology(all)
    • Developmental and Educational Psychology

    Cite this

    Imaginary worldplay in childhood and maturity and its impact on adult creativity. / Root-Bernstein, Michele; Root-Bernstein, Robert.

    In: Creativity Research Journal, Vol. 18, No. 4, 2006, p. 405-425.

    Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

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