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Genius and the MindStudies of Creativity and Temperament$
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Andrew Steptoe

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198523734

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198523734.001.0001

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The genetics of genius

The genetics of genius

Chapter:
(p.14) (p.15) Chapter 2 The genetics of genius
Source:
Genius and the Mind
Author(s):

David T. Lykken

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198523734.003.0002

This chapter outlines the advances in molecular genetics and discusses their application to genius. The chapter points out, the question is no longer whether genetic or environmental factors determine behaviour, but how they interact. It is extremely unlikely that there is such a thing as a ‘poetry gene’ or a ‘music gene’, since complex human behaviours typically have a polygenic basis. This chapter describes the concept of emergenesis, an extreme form of epistasis, in which a unique combination of genes may lead to qualitative shifts in capacity or ability.

Keywords:   molecular genetics, genetic factors, environmental factors, poetry gene, music gene, genius, epistasis

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