Monday, February 01, 2010

Definition of an Intellectual

According to Thomas Sowell, in his book Intellectuals and Society :

An intellectual is a person whose end product is ideas.

This is distinct from being intelligent, or being educated, or doing heavy brain work. 

Lots of people do heavy brain work, but the ideas result in things (new medicines, bridges, or even winning chess games) that can be tested according to how well they perform in the real world.

If the end product is only ideas, the ideas are only tested by how good they sound to other intellectuals.

No comments: