FRANK XAVIER BARRON, 1922 - 2002
PIONEER IN THE PSYCHOLOGY OF CREATIVITY
· 1969 Recipient of the APA Richardson Creativity Award.
· 1995 Recipient of the Rudolf Arnheim Award.
· Frank Barron was born in Pennsylvania, USA in 1922. From 1942 during WWII, he served the U.S. Army in Europe as a medic, and completed his M.A. in Psychology in 1948.
· Received Ph.D. at University of California, Berkeley in 1950 and worked for over 30 years at the Berkeley Institute for Personality Assessment and Research (IPAR). Helped to design personality measurement tests. 1950’s articles epitomized IPAR approach emphasizing objective techniques of measurement and concern for the complexity of effective behavior. Contributed to study on the nature of the Creative Person.
· Two of Dr. Barron's books, ''Creativity and Psychological Health'' (1963) and ''Creativity and Personal Freedom'' (1968), are considered classics in the field.
· 1969 Received the APA Richardson Creativity Award.
· Contributed to studies on Essence of Creativity. Stated “All creation is collaboration”. He wrote that creativity manifested itself as the rhythmic alteration and a genuine resolution or synthesis of certain common antinomies (paradoxes). “Apparently contradictory principles of action, thought, and feeling, which usually must be sacrificed one to the other, are instead expressed fully in one sequence, the dialectic leading at special moments to an unusual integration” (1964,1995). (Dialectic: the contradiction between two conflicting forces viewed as the determining factor in their continuing interaction.)
· Studied the effects of psychedelic drugs in the 1960s – the decade of the “Hippie Revolution”.
· Contributed to philosophical, methodological and cosmological approaches to Creativity. Barron emphasized that psychology gains great strength from its origin in philosophy, and that creativity research reopened "some of the doors that were closed to psychology when it self-consciously separated itself from philosophy" (1975).
· 1989 He was president of APA's Humanistic Division from 1989 to 1990.
· 1995 Received the Rudolf Arnheim Award.
· 2002 Died at age 80.
FAMOUS QUOTES by FRANK BARRON:
Creativity requires taking what Einstein called “a leap into the unknown.” This can mean putting all your beliefs, reputation and resources on the line as you suffer the slings and arrows of ridicule.
Thus the creative genius may be at once naïve and knowledgeable, being at home equally to primitive symbolism and to rigorous logic. He is both more primitive and more cultured, more destructive and more constructive, occasionally crazier yet adamantly saner, than the average person.
The creative person plays close attention to what appears to be discordant and contradictory … and is challenged by such irregularities.
Books by Barron include: Creativity and Psychological Health (1963); Creativity and Personal Freedom (1968); Creative Person and Creative Process (1969); Artists in the Making (1972); The Shaping of Personality (1979); No Rootless Flower: An Ecology of Creativity (1995); and Creators on Creating (1997).
Arons, M. (2003). A tribute to Frank Barron: He helped bend a century. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 43(2), 26-
Barron, F., 1922-2002. (1963). Creativity and psychological health: Origins of personal vitality and creative freedom.
Princeton, N.J: Princeton, N.J., : Van Nostrand.
Barron, F., 1922-2002. (1968). Creativity and personal freedom: [by] frank barron. Princeton, N.J: Princeton, N.J., :
Barron, F., 1922-2002. (1969). Creative person and creative process: [by] frank barron. New York: New York, : Holt,
Rinehart and Winston.
Barron, F., 1922-2002. (1972). Artists in the making: By Frank Barron. with the collaboration or assistance in particular
chapters of: Wallace B. hall [and others. New York: New York, : Seminar Press, 1972.
Barron, F., 1922-2002. (1995). No rootless flower: An ecology of creativity / frank barron. Cresskill, N.J: Cresskill, N.J.:
Hampton Press, 1995.
Barron, F., 1922-2002, Montuori, A., & Barron, A. (1997). Creators on creating: Awakening and cultivating the
imaginative mind / edited by frank barron, alfonso montuori, and anthea barron. New York: New York : G.P.
Putnam's Sons, c1997.
McCormack, W. A. (2003). Obituary: Frank Barron. Empirical Studies of the Arts, 21(2), 211-213. doi:10.2190/NXG3-
Taylor, C. W. 1., Barron, F., 1922-2002, & University of Utah. (1963). Scientific creativity, its recognition and