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Streaming video

Title Creative Disorders
Published Australia : SBS ONE, 2009
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource (streaming video file) (49 min. 7 sec.) ; 297625396 bytes
Summary The notion of the mad genius has stimulated the imagination for many years but is it plausible? Can some seemingly debilitating disorders stimulate creativity? Creative Disorders is a documentary which tells the story of Nick Van Bloss, a musical prodigy living with Tourettes Syndrome. Nick's first tic occurred when he was seven and from then on, his body was no longer his own. He describes the syndrome as "like something inside of me, making me do things that I don't want to do". As a child, he punched himself in the stomach, bit hard surfaces until his teeth broke, yelped, grabbed and spat at strangers. Nick found refuge in playing the piano; somehow his concentration on the keys banished the Tourettes.Creative Disorders takes viewers on Nick's personal and urgent journey of discovery, delving into the latest evidence linking disorders and creativity. There has always been anecdotal evidence supporting the idea of the mad genius, but little scientific proof. Nick unveils the extraordinary world of Tourettes and compares it with symptoms of over mood disorders. "The horrific aspect of Tourettes is that everything is exaggerated beyond the norm, everything is on fire all the time," says Dr Jordan B Peterson from the University of Toronto. "The sheer level of sensory input is so high, it's virtually overwhelming." Key characteristics of Schizophrenia and Bi-polar disorder tie in with the experience of Tourettes. It's Nick's mission to find out whether they all share potential for heightened creative impulses. Dr Peterson believes that a key quality, fundamental to creativity just so happens to be something that certain mood disordered people share. The quality is called "low latent inhibition" which gives people the ability to see the world in a completely unique way. They spot objects and sounds that most of us ignore and to try and make sense of them, they literally have to reconfigure the world.On his travels, Nick meets Professor Oliver Sachs who offers some interesting insights into the link between disorders and creativity. "I don't think one can have a purely creative disease. In a way there is something brilliant about Tourettes in its stimulation of emotions but control may be lost. No work of art can be created without consciousness and control."In Creative Disorders, Nick's journey is driven by an intensely personal reason but his quest throws light on the universal idea of the mad genius. "I'm more concerned that ever that the Tourettes is the fuel, it's the fire within. It's the burning energy," says Nick. "If I didn't have Tourettes I'm positive that I wouldn't be able to feel creativity the way that I do." (From the UK, in English) (Documentary)
Event Broadcast 2009-11-19 at 13:30:00
Notes Classification: M
Subject Creative ability -- Psychological aspects.
Tourette syndrome -- Patients.
Massachusetts -- Boston.
Form Streaming video
Author Baron-Cohen, Simon, contributor
Bloss, Nick Van, contributor
Flaherty, Alice, contributor
Howard-Jones, Paul, contributor
Ibrahim, Issa, contributor
Johnston, Sue, cast
Peterson, Jordan B, contributor
Picker, Tobias, contributor
Rice, Greg, contributor
Sacks, Oliver, contributor
Savage, Matt, contributor
Tursi, John, contributor
Waldorf, David, contributor