Inventing Imaginary Worlds: From Childhood Play To Adult Creativity Across The Arts And Sciences

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Inventing Imaginary Worlds: From Childhood Play To Adult Creativity Across The Arts And Sciences

by Michele Root-bernstein

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers | June 18, 2014 | Trade Paperback

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How can parents, educators, business leaders and policy makers nurture creativity, prepare for inventiveness and stimulate innovation? One compelling answer, this book argues, lies in fostering the invention of imaginary worlds, a.k.a. worldplay. First emerging in middle childhood, this complex form of make-believe draws lifelong energy from the fruitful combustions of play, imagination and creativity. Unfortunately, trends in modern life conspire to break down the synergies of creative play with imaginary worlds. Unstructured playtime in childhood has all but disappeared. Invent-it-yourself make-believe places have all but succumbed in adolescence to ready-made computer games. Adults are discouraged from playing as a waste of time with no relevance to the workplace. Narrow notions of creativity exile the fictive imagination to fantasy arts. And yet, as Michele Root-Bernstein demonstrates by means of historical inquiry, quantitative study and contemporary interview, spontaneous worldplay in childhood develops creative potential, and strategic worldplay in adulthood inspires innovations in the sciences and social sciences as well as the arts and literature. Inventing imaginary worlds develops the skills society needs for inventing the future. For more on Inventing Imaginary Worlds, check out: www.inventingimaginaryworlds.com Check out Michele's website: www.inventingimaginaryworlds.com

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 284 pages, 9.98 × 7 × 0.67 in

Published: June 18, 2014

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1475809794

ISBN - 13: 9781475809794

Found in: Reference and Language

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Inventing Imaginary Worlds: From Childhood Play To Adult Creativity Across The Arts And Sciences

Inventing Imaginary Worlds: From Childhood Play To Adult Creativity Across The Arts And Sciences

by Michele Root-bernstein

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 284 pages, 9.98 × 7 × 0.67 in

Published: June 18, 2014

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1475809794

ISBN - 13: 9781475809794

Table of Contents

List of Figures Introduction The Story of Worldplay Acknowledgments Part One: Discovering Worldplay Where It Grows Chapter 1: Hidden Worlds of Play: A Journey Through the Land of Kar Chapter 2: Searching for Paracosms: How One Man Found the Imaginary Worlds of Childhood Chapter 3: Memory Counts: MacArthur Fellows and College Students Recall Childhood Play Part Two: Exploring the Gardens of Make-Believe Chapter 4: Pretense and Place: The Poetics of Play in Middle Childhood Chapter 5: Imaginary Countries and Gifted Play: First Investigations of 'Creative IQ' Chapter 6: A Learning Laboratory in Creative Practice: Plumbing the Plausible Imagination Part Three: Grafting Worldplay to Adult Work Chapter 7: The Maturation of Creative Imagination: Robert Louis Stevenson as Mentor Chapter 8: Worldplay at Work: MacArthur Fellows Straddle a Creative Divide Chapter 9: The Worldplay Avocation-Vocation: Case Studies in Creative Polymathy Part 4: Sowing the Seeds of Worldplay Chapter 10: Imaginary World Invention Goes to School: An Argument for Playful Learning Chapter 11: Worldplay the Computer Way: Children and Youth Reveal Their Lived Experience Chapter 12: The Creative Capital of Make-Believe: How to Support Children Playing at Their Best Conclusion. Wither the Worldplay Impulse? Appendix. A Childhood Worldplay List Endnotes Bibliography
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From the Publisher

How can parents, educators, business leaders and policy makers nurture creativity, prepare for inventiveness and stimulate innovation? One compelling answer, this book argues, lies in fostering the invention of imaginary worlds, a.k.a. worldplay. First emerging in middle childhood, this complex form of make-believe draws lifelong energy from the fruitful combustions of play, imagination and creativity. Unfortunately, trends in modern life conspire to break down the synergies of creative play with imaginary worlds. Unstructured playtime in childhood has all but disappeared. Invent-it-yourself make-believe places have all but succumbed in adolescence to ready-made computer games. Adults are discouraged from playing as a waste of time with no relevance to the workplace. Narrow notions of creativity exile the fictive imagination to fantasy arts. And yet, as Michele Root-Bernstein demonstrates by means of historical inquiry, quantitative study and contemporary interview, spontaneous worldplay in childhood develops creative potential, and strategic worldplay in adulthood inspires innovations in the sciences and social sciences as well as the arts and literature. Inventing imaginary worlds develops the skills society needs for inventing the future. For more on Inventing Imaginary Worlds, check out: www.inventingimaginaryworlds.com Check out Michele's website: www.inventingimaginaryworlds.com

About the Author

Michele Root-Bernstein is an historian, a haiku poet, an independent scholar in creativity studies affiliated with Michigan State University and a teaching artist associated with the John F. Kennedy Center. Co-author of the book, Sparks of Genius, The Thirteen Thinking Tools of the World's Most Creative People, she researches, lectures, workshops, writes and blogs on the practices and processes of creative imagination in all walks of life.

Editorial Reviews

This book provides a beautifully written and comprehensive account of one of the most impressive feats of childhood imagination- the spontaneous creation of entire fictional worlds. Michele Root-Bernstein covers historical examples, the ground-breaking research of Robert Silvey and his colleagues, her own empirical studies, and her naturalistic observations of her children. The literature on imaginary worlds is meticulously researched, carefully interpreted, and presented in all its fascinating detail. This is the authoritative volume on the subject and will be essential reading for anyone interested in the development of imagination.