From the Editor

By Elizabeth Smith


In the world of psychology, most examinations of creativity place it in one of two categories: "Big-C" creativity, which describes the work of the creative genius or renowned innovator, and "little-c" creativity, the everyday inspiration we all call on for such simple activities as home décor or inspiring a rapt audience with a story of the day’s events. But creativity is not only something that results in the great American novel, attractive flower arrangements or a game-changing discovery. Creativity has been called the world’s most important economic resource, particularly in the 21st century, and we benefit from our own and others’ creativity in everything from the blazing fast computer we use to the inventive routes we come up with to circumvent rush-hour traffic to the tasty morsels we serve up for dinner. What’s the secret to creativity? How do we cultivate it in ourselves and in others? (Saint Mary’s professors think about this one A LOT in their research and teaching.) And how do we ensure that our creativity takes wing in the form of personal growth or value in the world? As if we’re poised around a seminar table, we explore the multitude of answers to these and other questions in this issue of Saint Mary’s.

Elizabeth Smith
Executive Editor

P.S. With this issue we bid farewell to former Saint Mary’s editor Erin Hallissy and welcome Jo Shroyer, who will step into the role with the next issue. Have your own creative ideas for her? Drop Jo a line at