Cultural Creatives

The Cultural Creatives

I make reference to The Cultural Creatives and to Integral theory and transmodernism in other blogs. The main idea is that the trans-modern cultural creatives present an alternative to both the pre-modern traditionalists and the modern progressives,  critiquing them and at the same time  transcending them with a new synthesis.

Here is the wikipedia article:

The Cultural Creatives: How 50 Million People Are Changing the World is a nonfiction social sciences and sociology book by sociologist Paul H. Ray and psychologist Sherry Ruth Anderson,[1] first published in 2000.[2] The authors introduced the term “Cultural Creatives” to describe a large segment in Western society that has recently developed beyond the standard paradigm of modernists or progressives versus traditionalists or conservatives. Ray and Anderson claim to have found that 50 million adult Americans (slightly over one quarter of the adult population) can now be identified as belonging to this group. They estimated that there were an additional 80–90 million “Cultural Creatives” in Europe as

Two types

Ray and Anderson divide “Cultural Creatives” into two subdivisions:

Core “Cultural Creatives”

Just under half of the CC population comprises the more educated, leading-edge thinkers. This group includes many writers, artists, musicians, psychotherapists, feminists, alternative health care providers and other professionals. They combine a serious focus on their spirituality with a strong passion for social activism.

Green “Cultural Creatives”

The more secular and extroverted wing of the “Cultural Creatives”. They tend to follow the opinions of the core group and have a more conventional religious outlook. Their world views are less thought out than the core group and less intensely held.

Characteristics

Ray and Anderson created a questionnaire to identify “Cultural Creatives” in Western society. The below characteristics were identified as qualities of a “Cultural Creative”. Agreement with 10 or more indicates status as a “Cultural Creative”.

  • love of nature and deep caring about its preservation, and its natural balance.
  • strong awareness of the planet-wide issues like climate change and poverty and a desire to see more action on them
  • being active themselves
  • willingness to pay higher taxes or spend more money for goods if that money went to improving the environment
  • heavy emphasis on the importance of developing and maintaining relationships
  • heavy emphasis on the importance of helping others and developing their unique gifts
  • volunteer with one or more good causes
  • intense interest in spiritual and psychological development
  • see spirituality as an important aspect of life, but worry about religious fundamentalism
  • desire equality for women and men in business, life and politics
  • concern and support of the well being of all women and children
  • want politicians and government to spend more money on education, community programs and the support of a more ecologically sustainable future
  • are unhappy with the left and right in politics
  • optimism towards the future
  • want to be involved in creating a new and better way of life
  • are concerned with big business and the means they use to generate profits, including destroying the environment and exploiting poorer countries
  • unlikely to overspend or be heavily in debt
  • dislike the emphasis of modern cultures on “making it” and “success”, on consuming and making money
  • like people, places and things that are different or exotic

Values

Ray and Anderson assert that “values are the best single predictor of real behavior”. The list below outlines the values that dictate a “Cultural Creative”‘s behavior:

  • Authenticity, actions must be consistent with words and beliefs
  • Engaged action and whole process learning; seeing the world as interwoven and connected
  • Idealism and activism
  • Globalism and ecology
  • The importance of women

Core “Cultural Creatives” also value altruism, self-actualization, and spirituality.

In business

The 2008 marketing text, Karma Queens, Geek Gods and Innerpreneurs, by Ron Rentel, was the first to identify the “Cultural Creative” subculture in entrepreneurship. Rentel named entrepreneurial “Cultural Creatives”, “innerpreneurs”. “Innerpreneurs” have the defining characteristics of an entrepreneur:

  • high need for achievement
  • high need for independence
  • low need for conformity
  • internal focus of control
  • love of ambiguity
  • propensity for risk-taking
  • obsession with opportunity

But while entrepreneurs use their business for monetary gain, “innerpreneurs” use their business to find personal fulfillment (creatively, spiritually, emotionally) and create social change.

In 2008, there was much discussion in the Western media on the ‘creative economy’ and the importance of the ‘creative class’. Richard Florida published a series of books on this identified ‘creative class’ and their upcoming economic importance. Bill Gates spoke at the World Economic Forum 2008 on the need for ‘creative capitalism’ as a solution to the world’s problems. They theorize that being creative and inventive will be the key to business success in the 21st century and that a country’s economic success will be determined by its capitalists’ ability to mobilize, attract and retain human creative talent.

Usage of the term integral

Ray gives the term “Integral Culture” to the growing subculture also referred to as transmodernism, and which he refers to as the “Cultural Creatives”. They are concerned with ecological sustainability and in the case of a core group have a commitment to personal and spiritual development. These are individuals who can meld the best of traditionalism and modernism to create a new synthesis, having a cognitive style based on synthesizing varied information from many sources into a big picture.[3][4] This term can also apply to integral theory, a philosophy expounded by Ken Wilber.

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Philosophical Reflections and Musings on the Great Questions of Life

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