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Professor Stephanie Taylor’s Inaugural Lecture: 'Capturing feeling and experience in research about creativity'

Tuesday, June 14, 2022 - 18:00 to 19:00
Online & Berrill Theatre, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes, MK7 6AA

Stephanie Taylor is a Professor in Social Psychology in the School of Psychology and Counselling. In her inaugural lecture, Professor Stephanie Taylor will discuss the associations of creativity, its contradictions and how we can understand the experience of being creative.


Image of an artist drawing

Creativity carries contradictory associations. It supposedly drives the unworldly artist who turns away from practical concerns in pursuit of creative fulfilment, and also the hard-headed entrepreneur and the supremely rational scientist. Creativity is thought of as the special gift that marks off a minority of ‘great’ people, and a capacity that all of us possess and should exercise, for our mental health. These contradictions co-exist in psychology and to some extent originated there. Academic psychologists have discussed the creativity of exceptional people, developed tests for creativity, modelled creative processes, and proposed that creativity is a basic human potential often inhibited by society. In the late 20th century, psychology contributed to the identification and naming of the creative industries as a significant sector in contemporary economies. Critics have suggested that the sector is exploitative because it uses the romantic promise of creativity that derives from the arts in order to attract workers and induce them to accept bad employment. Is there another way to understand the continuing commitment of the workers, even after the sector was badly hit by the pandemic? My research centres on creative practitioners, including creative workers and artists. My lecture will consider the different insights into these issues that derive from critical discursive psychology. I will discuss how practitioners themselves understand creativity and its rewards, and how we can understand their emotions and feelings, or the affective experience of being creative.

We look forward to having you join us in celebrating Professor Taylor and her research in Social Psychology. You are welcome to attend the event in person or watch online. If you are attending in person, registration and coffee/tea start at 17:15

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If you are viewing the event by livestream, please do take the opportunity to have your questions answered by our speakers LIVE during the event by emailing: