Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Open Peer Commentary

Creativity or mental illness: Possible errors of relational priming in neural networks of the brain

James E. Swaina1 and John D. Swaina2

a1 Child Study Center, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520

a2 Department of Physics, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115.


If connectionist computational models explain the acquisition of complex cognitive skills, errors in such models would also help explain unusual brain activity such as in creativity – as well as in mental illness, including childhood onset problems with social behaviors in autism, the inability to maintain focus in attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and the lack of motivation of depression disorders.