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Is intellect innate?

  1. Aug 12, 2005 #1
    Or it's possible to acquire it?

    I noticed that many professors sound as clear as writers, that is if you listen to them, you can immediately say they're intellectuals. Of course they read books for leisure... Of course if a layman person reads the same books, he can discuss them with those professors, but i bet he still won't be forming sentences in the same aristocratic tone.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 12, 2005 #2
    I believe it has to with Environment issues?..how many laymen get invited to Galactic Balls etc..etc? PLus even Proffesors need shoulders..toes..to step upon!
  4. Aug 12, 2005 #3
    You have three different pots on the stove here, and you're mistaking them for the same thing.

    "Intellect" refers to a person's basic ability to comprehend things, how quick witted they are, and how well they can understand. A given individual might have a low, mediocre, or high intellect.

    An "intellectual" is just someone who concerns himself with things that require thinking, or using the intellect. A person can be an intellectual, without also having a high intellect. He could sit and read the great works all day long, think about them, end up hardly understanding them, but still be called an "intellectual" just based on his choice of activity.

    An aristocratic tone, is a separate thing altogether. It is not so much a sign of intellect, or that someone is an intellectual, as it is a sign of education. I think, from your use of words, that you are probably writing from the UK, where education and an aristocratic tone traditionlly are seen together since the aristocracy traditionally emphasized education for itself.

    Education can greatly hone anyone's basic intellect, sharpen it up, such that they end up seeming to have a higher intellect than they started with. Their basic intellect is probably not changed, though, just disciplined, directed, and more apparent. People can, indeed, be educated to express themselves with the sensitivity to meaning and concepts that good writers and professors have.
  5. Aug 12, 2005 #4


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    most professors are certainly qualified for their positions, but I've found that a good amount of them are pretty dumb/dull/obtuse in the general sense.
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