Our genes are the basic unit of heredity. They hold the key to many of our characteristics: the shape of our nose, the colour of our eyes, and whether we have curly or straight hair. But do they carry more than physical characteristics – traits such as creativity?
This is a question that Kate Forsyth explores in an essay for the National Library of Australia. In it, she asks: “One thing I have always wondered is whether my lifelong compulsion to write was encoded in my DNA.”
It’s a fascinating question. The Nature versus Nurture debate is a perennial issue in psychology. The Nature side of the debate argues that genes and hereditary factors influence who we are, while proponents of Nurture argue that all environmental variables impact who we are and the way we behave.
It’s rarely that clear-cut and most people these days would agree that both have influence on the person we become.
Back to Kate Forsyth’s essay.
In her family, there are writers of all types going back generations, which led her to ask if there is a writing gene. Read her article to discover her conclusion.