Re: Ender's Game - Chapters 4 through 6
misterpessimistic: I think genius is reliant on intelligence, but not all there is to it. What is it that makes the difference do you think?
I'd say interest in a problem or set of problems is part of it. My best friend's little brother may have an IQ equivalent to that of Ludwig Wittgenstein, but if he has no interest in the sort of problems that challenged Wittgenstein, he's just as likely to spend his days playing Whack-A-Mole as he is to provide a problem of epistemology. It robs the word "genuis" of any meaning to say that a person who spends his whole life playing Whack-A-Mole is as much a genius as someone who has made real contributions to the direction that civilization has taken.
That's my short form argument against the quantification of genius.
Making genius equivalent to a score on a numerical score seems to me like reducing the term to nothing more than hyperbole. It's the same as saying that someone's very smart, multiplying the very as many times as you'd like. But to my mind, intelligence isn't genius until the claim is justified by some act
of genius. And we can recognize those acts by the way in which they allow us to see the world differently, or by the way in which they change the way we live.
One interesting thing about that point of view is that it's wholly distinct from the numerical view of genius. A person can produce an act of genius regardless of how well he or she scores on an IQ test.