Saturday, November 20, 2010

The Ten Year Rule Or The Existence of Genius

There has been this rather old debate about the existence of genius or that there is nothing called genius in human society and that everything comes from hard work. In Europe, they call it the 'ten year rule', which means if you can work twenty hours a week for ten years doing something, you would excel in it to become a genius. In the US, they call it the '10,000 hour rule', which means if you work at something for ten thousand hours, you would surely become genius.

There are a number of well-known people, celebrities and gifted people who would make us believe that the '10,000 hour rule' is correct. Of course, it could as well be.

But the idea that genius does not exist in human society suits our egalitarian model of society so much that we would like to completely debunk the concept of genius and that of human intelligence. There is something wrong with this assertion as well.

In an interview to Bruce Duffie, the well-known music conductor, Sir Georg Solti says that 'if you work hard, you will arrive'. Solti was known as the best music conductor of the twentieth century and had won thirty one individual Grammy Awards as well. So, he does seem to support the idea that it is hard work and nothing else that leads to genius.

I would love to support hard work and not question its importance. However, I would also like to state that 'Nannerl' Maria Anna Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's sister got the same training along with her famous brother that their father imparted to both the children. So, both the children worked very hard but only one of them is known as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart while his sister, Nannerl is quite unknown.

So, there is a case for human genius as well.

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