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Dyslexi och Kreativitet – Gunnar Bjursell / Dyslexia and Creativity – Gunnar Bjursell

Dyslexi och Kreativitet –  Gunnar Bjursell / Dyslexia and Creativity – Gunnar Bjursell


– I’ll start by giving you some initial thoughts about
who we are and about nature and nurture. and then I’ll talk about why I as a
molecular biologist or molecular geneticist have come to work within culture. Culture and health, and now culture and the brain
at the Karolinska Institute as a major area. That is, what are the biological effects of culture. This image was shown in Nature in 2009,
150 years after Darwin’s book was published. And it says “Geneticists looked at the
human genome to understand evolution ” “but it´s hard to interpret it without
considering the inheritance of culture. ” And that is an old idea really, that we have
a biological inheritance and that inheritance generates variation. And that it’s something that
is part of basic biology. Then we add Darwin´s “Survival of the fittest”,
but that is not quite true in our culture. After all, we humans take care of those who in a harsher
environment would not be able to have children. And that’s why we get a greater biological variation. But then we have another part of our
inheritance, and that is the cultural heritage. We know what Homer wrote,
we know what Pythagoras thought. We know what Socrates and Einstein wrote, and so on. We must not miss out on this, to pass on
this heritage of knowledge that we have. Because whatever we do we base
it on other people’s discoveries. Now we have started to develop methodology and
instruments for studying how the human brain works. These are pictures where you can see how
electricity moves within the wires of the brain. And then you can follow
what happens in the brain. The brain has a basic structure which
can vary between us as individuals. But the brain is affected by
everything we do and learn. If you are more proficient at practicing certain things,
like playing the piano, then part of the brain grows. And it looks different if you play the violin. When this study came out
it attracted a lot attention. Here they have tried to measure the
maturation of the brain at different ages in boys and girls up to the age of 25. And when you look at this you get up to a brain maturity of one, but you see what a huge variation there is among us. And tit comes down to how good the relationships are
between our fundamental centers of the brain and our judgment, our ability to make assessments. So basically if you take a boy born
in December and a girl born in January who are in the same class, there can easily be a
difference of three years in maturity between them. So you can understand what a huge
variation there is between individuals. Both in maturity but also in what
abilities we inherited from our parents. And now I’m going to be a little harsh and say,
if there are any politicians here, that there is a tendency to
not want to see this picture. Or not even a tendency, they simply
don’t want to see this picture. It is too complex, too difficult. You´re supposed to have one school and everyone should
go and learn according to … like this… And it is completely impossible from a
biological aspect, it simply can´t be done. Here you have to find ways to bridge
this process to get there. And it must be individual. And this is because there is
an old construction in the schools which in my opinion is wrong right from the start. Where you say that all children enter and have the same prerequisites,
and if you just have a good teacher everyone becomes famous CEO:s. And it’s not that simple. ADHD then, is it a difficulty with learning? No it’s not, it’s a difficulty with concentration. It’s not that they can’t learn things, because
we know that there are many people with ADHD who are very capable and can learn,
but the issue is to find methods for it. So this is what we ask ourselves, should there be
music and can music have value in school? Trainor made a very important discovery. She lets a parent carry their baby while at the same time music
is played, and the parent moves rhythmically to the music. And after the exercise you perform a test on the baby. And the result was that the child’s social ability
increases and it becomes more generous and helpful. But if you move in an arrhythmic way,
the results do not appear. So then we have to separate things according
to this in school too, so learning is one thing But also as I’ve talked about a lot with the
former Minister of Culture Bengt Göransson, that school is also a very social phenomenon
where students connect. If we are to exploit the potential, we must
be able to collaborate, talk, and socialize. So that is also an extremely important factor. And here music, dance, and other cultural
expressions play a very important role. Dudamel is well known, he is world famous and works
with Damasio who also has been here with us. She was here in May and talked about how
important music is at an early age. At the very least the prosocial part, but also
that it improves hearing and language. A lot of positive things. Here is another very good magazine about
ADHD and music and how it can be utilized. This one is about dyslexia and music. I won’t translate these or describe what they have done,
but in all these cases there are very positive effects of music and that music should be included. I mean, Habib says that music must be
part of the curriculum for younger children and Trainor says they should dance with each other
because it reduces the risk of bullying and so on. Dance is an amplification of music, it’s hard for the brain,
it is movement, and it is relating to another person. So the whole area is boiling, it’s evolving,
and entering brand new areas. And the important thing is that it’s
not just the training of abilities but also things like motivation, creativity,
social community and unity that are important with this research. And I must thank you all for staying and listening. Thank you.

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