Genius, Talent, and Creativity: From Mozart and Beethoven to Creative Classes/ Geniu, talent și creativitate: De la Mozart și Beethoven la clasele creative/ 3-23

Radu Cristian Andreescu


This paper addresses the problem of artistic talent regarded as an object of contention between social-constructivist theories describing genius as the effect of social relations and prestige construction (Tia DeNora), on the one hand, and previous Kantian and romantic theories of genius as an exceptional natural endowment, on the other hand. We can thus notice that a middle ground in this contention is to be found in a sociology of creative work (Pierre-Michel Menger) which posits the existence of intrinsic yet initially indeterminate differences between competing artists, along with the labour market conditions, the mobilization of resources, and the aesthetic recognition of the work of art itself. In addition, we will argue that the old notion of genius, as developed in Mozart’s or Beethoven’s times, has faded today in favour of the broader notion of creativity which pertains not only to the philosophy of art, but also to the economic field of late capitalism. Consequently, the sociology of creative work emphasizes a new relation between talent and work, inasmuch as a new concept of work pervades the sphere of creation, innovation, originality, and uncertainty which has previously characterized the art worlds. Since creativity is defined as a common resource of every human being (Richard Florida), the artist is no longer regarded as the lone romantic genius, but rather as a creative individual who belongs to a creative class and embodies the spirit of an era characterized, according to Richard Florida, by an increasing capital of creativity. Therefore, the new relation between work and creativity involves a double movement: the artists identify themselves as creative workers, while more and more workers tend to bring creativity into their daily work.


creativity, talent, genius, artist, creative work, social constructivism, creative class.

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ISSN 2668-0009; ISSN-L 2668-0009