The GAM/DP Theory of Personality and Creativity
by: William A. Therivel, PhD
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-GAM/DP Synopsis
-GAM Introduction
-DP Introduction
-GAM/DP Summary
-Mozart and not Salieri
-Personality Families
-Berlin's Hedgehogs & Foxes
-James Joyce - Fox
-Newton's Personality Styles
-Gifted and Talented
-GAM's Marginal Men
-GAM's Heidegger
-GAM's Nietzsche
-GAM's Nathaniel Hawthorne
-German Ethnopsychology
-Japanese Ethnopsychology
-French Ethnopsychology
-Spanish Ethnopsychology
-Chinese Ethnopsychology
-Argentine Ethnopsychology
-Byzantium's Creativity
-Venice's Creativity
-Chaucer's Griselda
-Western Medicine's Origins
-Individual Growth by Thinking GxAxMxDP
William A. Therivel
William Therivel
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-High Creativity Unmasked
-Studying Power
-Studying National Characters
-Studying National Creativity
Biography of Author

The low literary creativity of Venice is discussed in
Therivel's GAM/DP Theory of Personality and Creativity.

Venice's Creativity?

Why Did Venice Have No Great Writers When It Had Great Painters,
Architects And Musicians

The above is the title of chapter 13 of volume 4 of William A. Therivel's The GAM/DP Theory of Personality and Creativity (G stands for genetic endowment, A for assistances of youth, M for misfortunes of youth, DP for division of power, UP for unity of power). For an introduction to the GAM part of the theory click "Introduction to GAM"; for an introduction to the DP part click on "Introduction to DP".
In this website, the reader is also offered a shortcut: The GAM/DP Synopsis and an expanded version, The GAM/DP Summary of volumes 1 through 4.

Hereafter, I report a few pages from this chapter:


     Venice is an extraordinary place, praised for centuries by such connoisseurs as Goethe and Ruskin, for its architects, painters, and composers. Everybody comes back enchanted. However, little of this praise goes to its writers. On this point, the silence is nearly universal. Indeed, none of the great Italian writers were Venetian, not Dante, Petrarch, Boccaccio, Machiavelli, Ariosto or Tasso. Even the stars of second and third magnitude of Italy's golden centuries (14th, 15th and 16th), like Guicciardini, Castiglione, Pulci, Boiardo, Vasari, were not Venetian.1
     Others have noticed this too. Even the Venice-friendly William McNeill, in his Venice: the Hinge of Europe, 1081-1797, was forced to admit that "until after 1481, when Venice's imperial power was already entering on a downward path, the city remained a follower, not a pace-setter in matters cultural" (1974, p. 92).
     Similarly, the Venice-friendly Vincent Cronin--in his The Flowering of the Renaissance--could only assemble four names in praise of the Venetian classical revival: "Aldus Manutius [b. 1450], who typifies Venetian freedom of the press; Sperone Speroni [b. 1500], a characteristic Venetian humanist in that he thought for himself; the poetess Gaspara Stampa [b. 1525], who expressed without inhibition the sensuous, passionate element in the Venetian character; and lastly, Pietro Aretino [b. 1492], an outspoken champion of political and intellectual freedom" (1969, p. 180). However, the first is neither a writer nor Venetian (he was born of Roman parents, and educated in Rome and Ferrara), the next two are little known even in Italy, and the last, again, is no Venetian given that he was born in Arezzo (Aretino means "of Arezzo" from the Latin Arretium), moved first to Perugia in his adolescent years, then to Rome, and finally to Venice at the relatively advanced age of 35.
     On the other hand, as soon as we move to painting and architecture, Venice comes into its own: Giovanni Bellini (1430), Carpaccio (1465), Giorgione (1478), Titian (1490), Palladio (1508), Tintoretto (1518), Veronese (1528), were all Venetian.2 Later came a string of great musical composers: Andrea (1510) and Giovanni (1556) Gabrielli, Vivaldi (1665), Alessandro (1684) and Benedetto (1686) Marcello, Tartini (1692), Galuppi (1706).
     Usually, this combination of few great thinkers (poets, novelists, essayist, philosophers, historians) and many great painters, sculptors, architects and composers is the result of many centuries of unity of power. In the case of Venice it was the unity of power of its oligarchy and of its cultural Byzantine roots.

1Dante (born in 1265), Petrarch (1302), Boccaccio (1313), Machiavelli (1469), were all Florentines; Ariosto (1474) came from Mantua-Ferrara, and Tasso (1544) from Sorrento-Naples; Pulci (1432) and Guicciardini (1483) were again Florentines; Castiglione (1478) from Mantua in Lombardy; Boiardo (1441), from Scandiano-Ferrara; Vasari (1511) from Tuscan Arezzo, 40 miles south-east of Florence. A partial exception could be Paolo Sarpi (b. 1552), the author of History of the Council of Trent first published in London in 1619. Later there will be such writers as Goldoni (b. 1707), and autobiographers like Casanova (b. 1725), but they already belong to a different world: Goldoni wrote his Mémoires in French and dedicated them to King Louis XVI, and Casanova also wrote his Histoire de ma vie (History of my life) in French.

2 On the other hand, there is no aut aut, and great painting, sculpture, and architecture can go along with great writing as proved by the following eminent Florentine (or Tuscan) artists: Giotto (1266), Donatello (1382), Fra Angelico (1395), Ghiberti (1378), Masaccio (1401), Piero della Francesca (1415), Pollaiuolo (1431), Botticelli (1445), Leonardo da Vinci (1452), Michelangelo (1475).

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