The link between being gay and being creative


I have recently been entertaining myself with the idea of the linkage between gays and creativity. I discussed it with many people with different backgrounds and opinions, and I give it much though myself. In reality, there is a general notion – positive stereotype that is attached to gay people and link them to creativity.

Ofcourse generalizing among a set of people in any attribute whether it is positive or negative is prone to carry an amount of error. Stereotyping is a kind of generalization that is usually proved mistaken when measured upon individuals, but it can also carry some amount of truth for it doesn’t come up of no where.

I have found no real scientific studies/statistics that link homosexuality to creativity, but gays can be easily spotted in the creative industry locally and around the world. One would argue that creative industries are more tolerant for the differences of people, and thus gay people would find it easier coming out without hiding their sexual identities, but the observations of the numbers (which might be wrong) do indicate a larger ration of gay people in creative jobs than in society at large. A visit to a fashion house, advertising agency, or the faculty of art in a college might give a closer view.

Creativity itself is a wide concept. Wickipedia defines it as a mental process involving the generation of new ideas and concepts. Generation of new ideas is not limited on some considered to be creative industry. In every job, there is a space for creativity. People may shine anywhere. Claiming that only gay people are capable of being creative is absurd at least, but whether there a is correlation between the two attributes is something that is worth investigation.

A reasonable explanation of the creativity of gay people is that breaking the barriers of social rules that gay people has to go through in order to embrace their sexuality does leave them with no real boundaries that may limit their scope of thinking. Viewing society from a different perspective may be an advantage of a focal point for generation new ideas. Other non homosexual people who do break so social norms in a way or another are more likely to be creative than others who are limited with chains of inherited set of rules and ideas. It does explain the small ration of creative people in the Arab world compared to the western world for us trying to dictate every aspect of our lives through a set of rules attached to what we call our religion.

But does that explain the childhood emerged talents of creative people?

Some gay people prove their talent in their early childhoood before even realizing their sexuality and what does it mean. They show such talent without also having to break any social rule or defined constraint. I remember at the age of 10, one of my friends at school had the ability to draw a full features faces on the black board. I have no idea about his sexual orientation, but this is a living example of the emerging childhood talents.

Does childhood creativity indicates a genetic linkage? It may, and it may not. I sometimes wonder if there are a set of bundled genes that can come up togather which explains partially some stereotypes. I mean that there might be a linkage between a set of homosexual genes along of a set of creativity genes that may explain the attachment of gay people to creativity.

A simple reasoniong came from a religious view of a friend of mind: God takes something and gives something else instead, like having handicapped people being smart!

The explanation might sound offensive for gay people, as they don’t consider their sexual orientation a shortage that requires a compensation from God, and while there might be some smart handicapped people, it is absurd to generalize among them all. Still the notion of a bundled genes appears instinctly in such claim.

One other aspect that is worth mentioning here is the reasoning of the feminine side of gay men and the attachment of femininity to creativity. Claiming that gay men are more attached to their feminine side than straight men. While scientific studies proved some difference between the gay and straight brains, linking it to femininity is arguable. Besides, the whole argument is easily bounced by the amount of creative men through the history of humanity. How many of them were gay? That is impossible to prove.

Whether there is a link between being gay and being creative is arguable. Positive stereotyping may encourage more and more gay people to be more creative. Believing in something is a first step of achieving it. It is encourageable to positive stereotype oneself in order to get better achievments. Whether you are gay or not, positive stereotyping can be good for you, and does help your creative side shine.

19 thoughts on “The link between being gay and being creative

  1. Anonymous says:

    I agree with your explanation in the fifth paragraph. I think that too much oppression yields creativity. Many creative works are inspired by death, a really stressful life or a series of very sad events. With that said, the amount of stress a gay person has to deal with is tremendous. So gay people are as creative as heterosexuals, but are put in situations where they need to develop “creative” problem solving techniques to issues most heterosexuals never have to deal with. I also agree with another point mentioned in you post, because of all the stress, when a homosexual finally “comes out” or overcomes the barriers imposed by limited societal rules, the thought process and the boundaries that are broken are so huge that “thinking outside the box” or more appropriately “thinking outside the “closet” “ becomes an easier process for homosexuals than it is for heterosexuals.Further, for you to say “A simple reasoning came from a religious view of a friend of mind: God takes something and gives something else instead, like having handicapped people being smart!” is absurd, being gay is not the same as being handicapped, and for someone to argue this means they acknowledge homosexuality as a disease or sickness that needs to be cured, I strongly disagree.

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  2. KSA Dudu says:

    Interesting analysis. I personally believe that gays are creative with no exception. For example, someone i know is a lousy dot developer and a terrible graphic designer found himself in an ice cream shop. I find that extremely out of the box and creative.

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  3. cute intellectual observation there… i like it very much !here are some other information that might feed your apetite regarding such research : 1- Alexander the Great *Macedonian Ruler, 300 B.C. Socrates *Greek Philosopher, 400 B.C. Sappho *Greek Woman Poet, 600 B.C. Hadrian *Roman Emperor, 1st-2nd c. Richard the Lionhearted *English King, 12th c. Saladin *Sultan of Egypt and Syria Desiderius Erasmus *Dutch Monk, Philosopher Francis Bacon *English statesman, author Frederick the Great *King of Prussia Lord Byron *English poet, 18th c. Walt Whitman *U.S. poet, author, 19th c. Oscar Wilde *Irish author, 19th c. Marcel Proust *French author, 20th c. Colette *French author, 20th c. Gertrude Stein *U.S. poet, author, 20th c. Alice B. Toklas *U.S. author, 20th c. Federico Garcia Lorca *Spanish author, 20th c. Cole Porter *U.S. composer, 20th c. Virginia Woolf *English author, 20th c.Leonard Bernstein *U.S. composer, 20th c. Pope Julius III *1550-1555 T.E. Lawrence *English soldier, author, 20th c. Jean Cocteau *French writer, director, 20th c. Charles Laughton *English actor, 20th c. Marguerite Yourcenar *Belgian author, 20th c. Tennessee Williams *U.S. Playwright, 20th c. James Baldwin *U.S. author, 20th c. Andy Warhol *U.S. artist, 20th c. Michelangelo *Italian artist, 15th c. Leonardo Da Vinci *Ital. Artist, scientist, 15th c. Christopher Marlowe *Eng. Playwright, 16th c. Herman Melville *U.S. author, 19th c. Horatio Alger, Jr. *U.S. author, 19th c. Tchaikovsky *Russian composer, 19th c.Willa Cather *U.S. author, 19th c. Amy Lowell *U.S. author, 19th & 20th c. E.M. Forster *English author, 20th c. John M. Keynes *English economist, 20th c. Ludwig Wittgenstein *Australian mathematician, 20th c. Bessie Smith *U.S. singer, 20th c. Noel Coward *English playwright, 20th c. Christopher Isherwood *English author, 20th c. Pier Paolo Pasolini *Italian film director, 20th c. Yukio Mishima *Japanese author, 20th c. Eleanor Roosevelt *U.S. stateswoman, 20th c. Julius Caesar *Roman Emperor, 100-44 B.C. Augustus Caesar *Roman Emperor Harvey Milk *U.S. politician, 20th c. Bayard Rustin *U.S. Civil Rights activist, 20th c. James I *English King, 16th-17th c. Queen Anne *English Queen, 18th c. Marie Antoinette *French Empress, 18th c. Melissa Etheridge *U.S. Rock Star, 20th c. Pope Benedict IX *1032-1044 May Sarton *U.S. author, (1912 – 1995) Edna Ferber *U.S. author, 20th c. Elton John *English Rock Star, 20th c. Margaret Fuller *U.S. writer, educator, 20th c. Montezuma II *Aztec ruler, 16th c. Peter the Great *Russian Czar, 17th-18th c. Langston Hughes *U.S. author, 20th c. Pope John XII *955-964 Madame de Stael *French writer, 17th-18th c. Martina Navratilova *U.S. tennis star, 20th c. Greg Louganis *U.S. Olympic swimmer, 20th c. Billie Jean King *U.S. tennis star, 20th c. Roberta Achtenburg *U.S. politician, 20th c. Barney Frank *U.S. Congressman, 20th c. Gerry Studds *U.S. Congressman, 20th c. Hans Christian Andersen *Danish author, 19th c. Tom Dooley *U.S. M.D. missionary, 20th c. J. Edgar Hoover *U.S. director of the FBI., 20th c. Frida Kahlo *Mexican artist, 20th c. Suleiman the Magnificent *Ottoman ruler, 15th c. Rock Hudson *U.S. actor, 20th c. Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz *Mexican author, 16th c. Ralph Waldo Emerson *U.S. author, 19th c. Candace Gingrich *Gay Rights activist, 20th c. Margarethe Cammermeyer *U.S. Army Colonel, 20th c. Zoe Dunning *U.S. Military Reservist, 20th c. Tom Waddel *U.S. M.D., Olympic star, 20th c. Kate Millet *U.S. author, 20th c. Janis Joplin *U.S. singer, 20th c. Rudolf Nuryev *Russian dancer, 20th c. Waslaw Nijinsky *Russian dancer, 20th c. Ernst Röhm *German Nazi leader, 20th c. Dag Hammerskjold *Swedish UN Secretary, 209th c. Aristotle *Greek philosopher, 384-322 B.C. Paula Gunn Allen *Native American author, 20th c. Angela Davis *U.S. political activist, 20th c. June Jordan *U.S. author, activist, 20th c. Rainer Maria Rilke *German poet, 20th c. James Dean *U.S. actor, 20th c. Montgomery Clift *U.S. actor, 20th c. Baron VonSteuben *German General, Valley Forge Edward II *English King, 14th c. 2-google ” Cavafy ” the Alexandrian greek poet and you’ll feel the pure creativity of homosexuality

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  4. I wouldn’t say that gays are more talented than average… But its more likely that the talented subset are taking the lights more than the untalented subset!

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  5. Lesbians are creative too🙂 Gays are creative indeed, I work with some and they are not only the are amazing and inspiring, I’m learning for the best. they are the best indeed.btw, my ex-boss was a lesbian, and trust me.. she has facial hair LOL, she managed to win accounts for the agency that no one else could. she’s smart.

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  6. whether there is a link between being gay and creativity, i can’t tell, i dont think that what makes them creative is being homos, partially maybe, but definitely its something else. there is something about their perspective on life that is pretty, homos are very interesting ppl especially educated ones, they just need tools to excel, they are natural.

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  7. anonymous, it doesnt have to be like an acknowledgment of homosexuality as a sickness, but rather as a shortage because of social discrimination. Like God taking social status in way while giving it in another way through creativity🙂ksa dudu, who are you smart ass? the enchanted fairy, I m glad you like it. Interesting list!whatever, heheh🙂DM, I wonder how truth is there in that.anonymous, and you are a monkey?Moey, I think that my post applies on both gays and lesbians🙂Tala, I can see a change in your stand of gays? I remember you had a different opinion about them last year. Right? What does change?

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  8. i tend to be more against than neutral. nothing much changed. judging the practice and not people, not arabs in specific. homosexuality in general.

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  9. Having to come up with new and inventive ways to hide my sword-swallowing ways from <>les parents<> is a skill that is indeed transferable to other domains. Great post!

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  10. I never actually thought about that, but it makes perfect sense, how if you break society’s limitations, you feel unconquerable. I love that.

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  11. Tala, I understand your stand. That is what’s important, not judging people.Nizo, thanks! Living a double life is surely a skill🙂Farah,🙂, it does make sense yes

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  12. I don’t think there is a link between being creative and being gay: I instead think that there is a link between being a human fellow and at the same time being a guy!Otherwise, also in Italy – see http://www.gay.it – there are many people that do not consider gays like human beings…

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  13. “A simple reasoniong came from a religious view of a friend of mind: God takes something and gives something else instead, like having handicapped people being smart!“The explanation might sound offensive for gay people, as they don’t consider their sexual orientation a shortage that requires a compensation from God,…”The explanation does not sound offensive. It’s a thoughtless comparison. It’s not that I don’t consider my sexual orientation a shortage; it’s that it’s ridiculous to even compare it to a shortage of any sort.

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  15. In the gay community, you find the feminin side and the masculin side. In gay couples you always have the “feminin man” and the more “masculin man”, like in every heterosexual couple. And the “feminin man” tends to be more creative, more right-brain, more intuitive..
    The discussion is interesting, but needs an open (and creative?) mind in order to make it serious. comments such as “God takes something and gives something else instead, like having handicapped people being smart!” should not even be considered. It categorizes gay people as inferior, which is not the point in this debat..or is it?

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