Isen, A.M., University of Maryland Baltimore County, Daubman, K.A., University of Maryland (College Park), Nowicki, G.P., University of Maryland Baltimore County
Journal of Personality and Social Psychology
1987. Vol. 52. No. 6,'1122-1131
Four experiments indicated that positive affect, induced by means of seeing a few minutes of a
comedy film or by means of receiving a small bag of candy, improved performance on two tasks
that are generally regarded as requiring creative ingenuity: Duncker's (1945) candle task and M. T.
Mednick, S. A. Mednick, and E. V. Mednick's (1964) Remote Associates Test. One condition in
which negative affect was induced and two in which subjects engaged in physical exercise (intended
to represent atfectless arousal) failed to produce comparable improvements in creative performance.
The influence of positive affect on creativity was discussed in terms of a broader theory of the impact
of positive affect on cognitive organization.