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War and Creativity: Solving the War-Art Puzzle for Classical Music Composition

  • Karol Jan BOROWIECKI

    ()

    (Department of Economics, Trinity College Dublin)

The relationship between conflict and artistic output is ambiguous. This paper proposes an explanation for the contradiction in research, which we term the war-art puzzle. We employ a global sample of 115 prominent classical composers born after 1800 and link their annual productivity with the incidence of wars. We construct age-productivity profiles and find that the impact of wars on creative production is markedly heterogeneous - composers’ productivity was significantly higher during defensive or victorious international wars and lower during intra-state conflicts, offensive or lost international wars. the long-run.

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File URL: http://www.tcd.ie/Economics/TEP/2011/TEP0711.pdf
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Paper provided by Trinity College Dublin, Department of Economics in its series Trinity Economics Papers with number tep0711.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tcd:tcduee:tep0711
Contact details of provider: Postal: Trinity College, Dublin 2
Phone: (+ 353 1) 6081325
Fax: 6772503
Web page: http://www.tcd.ie/Economics/

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  1. David W. Galenson & Bruce A. Weinberg, 1999. "Age and the Quality of Work: The Case of Modern American Painters," NBER Working Papers 7122, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Victor Ginsburgh & Sheila Weyers, 2006. "Creativity and Life Cycles of Artists," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 30(2), pages 91-107, September.
  3. Karol Jan Borowiecki, 2010. "Are Composers Different? Historical Evidence on Conflict-induced Migration (1816-1997)," The Institute for International Integration Studies Discussion Paper Series iiisdp342, IIIS.
  4. David Galenson, 2000. "The Careers of Modern Artists," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 24(2), pages 87-112, May.
  5. Hellmanzik, Christiane, 2010. "Location matters: Estimating cluster premiums for prominent modern artists," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 199-218, February.
  6. David W. Galenson & Bruce A. Weinberg, 2001. "Creating Modern Art: The Changing Careers of Painters in France from Impressionism to Cubism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 1063-1071, September.
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