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