This is a new scholarly narrative on artistic loners, creative misogynist and the eccentric personalities of some of history's most creative and inspiring adventurers, great thinkers, and writers whose lives and achievements are analyzed from an Asperger Syndrome perspective. The study examines the unique interplay between human creativity and the known disabilities afflicting individuals with Asperger and ADHD. There is a very close relationship between creativity and disability of one form or another. This has been recognized for thousands of years. Indeed Seneca stated that "no great genius has ever existed without some touch of madness" and John Dryden wrote "Great Wits are sure to Madness Near ally'd - and thin partitions do their bounds divide." In terms of the aetiology of creativity there is no doubt that genetic factors play a significant part. Persons with novelty / seeking personality traits, who have a genetic polymorphism called dopamine D4 show creativity of an artistic type or are great explorers. They are excited by the new, the unconventional and the innovative and examples here would be Ernest Shackleton and Arthur Koestler.
Great creativity requires an unusual brain, a brain that is less integrated. It also requires personalities that are less balanced and outside the so called "normal personality". All these great creators paid a huge personal price for their creativity and for enriching our world.
Professor Michael Fitzgerald trained at Trinity College Dublin, Chicago Medical School, and the Maudsley Hospital, London. He has a doctorate in the area of autism and has been a researcher in this area since 1973. He was the first Professor of Child Psychiatry in Ireland the first Psychoanalyst recognised by the International psychoanalytic Association to practice in Eire. He has over 1300 peer reviewed publications and this is his 18th book. His special interests are in Creativity, Autism and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. He has lectured at the Royal Society / British Academy and British Library.
Foreword by Dr. Viktoria Lyons; Chapters:; 1. Creativity; 2. Robert Louis Stevenson; 3. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe; 4. William Blake; 5. A.J.P. Taylor; 6. Ernest Shackleton; 7. Arthur Koestler; 8. Frederick the Great; 9. Kenneth Tynan; 10. John Ruskin; 11. George Carman; 12. Dougal Haston.