Wednesday, September 14, 2016
I ran across an interesting article last week on the subject of creativity. The person who wrote the article expected to learn that the most creative Amercans lived on the coasts: New York in the East and California in the West. But his research showed something very different. The creatives live in the North, and non-creatives in the South.
According to the NEA (National Endowment for the Arts), creative people tend to live in northern states. They drew a line at the 36th parallel across a map of the country, and colored the states depending on how creative they were, 30%, 35%, 40%, 45%, 50%, 55%, 60% to 65%. All the states below the line scored in the 30% to 45%. All the states above that line scored in the 45% to 65% of creative endeavors.
That is, creating or participating in them, including what we normally consider the Arts, such as writing, acting, painting, music, etc. The NEA worked on this categorization with the Census Bureau in all 50 states in 2014.
The article received 46 comments, (a rather high number for the site reproducing the article), mostly from Southern readers, who were protesting the findings. Many said Southern people just don’t call what they do as “Art.” They might call it a “craft,” or just some other word about “what they do in their spare time, or to help their church, or whatever.”
Personally, I think it’s rational to assume that people who live in Northern states would use their coldest days to create or participate in art. People in Southern states have more sunny days per year, in which to walk, swim, play golf, or just loll in a hammock, rather than get themselves sweaty or tired from working at their art.
There’s no mystery to this. It sounds like common sense to me. Of course, I live in California, so I get to do both.