Featured 2017 Question: Intelligence


If you could, how would you redefine the word “intelligence?” Is it getting good grades? Having a degree? Having good instinct? Keeping an open mind? Is it to be confused with wisdom or knowledge?



Your responses will be interpreted into photography and video for Rewire Society’s next exhibition: Intelligence!

This question will close on July 6th, 2018 at 11:59pm.


Si pudieras, ¿cómo redefiniría la palabra “inteligencia”? ¿Es obtener buenas notas? ¿Tener un título? ¿Tener buenos instintos? ¿Mantener una mente abierta? ¿Se debe confundir “inteligencia” con sabiduría o conocimiento?



Sus respuestas serán interpretadas en fotografía y video para la próxima exposición de Rewire Society: ¡Inteligencia!

Esta pregunta se cerrará el 6 de julio de 2018 a las 11:59pm.

21 thoughts on “Featured 2017 Question: Intelligence

  1. “Intelligence is the ability to make meaningful connections” (The World Peace Diet, Will Tuttle)
    I have been thinking about the intelligence question for months. For Christmas I bought Daniel Goleman’s books Emotional Intelligence and Social Intelligence hoping that they might help me to bring my answer together. Then this morning, I read the above quote and knew immediately that this is my answer. There are many different realms to make connections in. Individual persons may shine in one, some, or many. A persons intelligence to make the connection is one part; the willingness to express that connection in doing is the next chapter.

  2. Recently got in a disagreement with coworker about higher education!

    A college degree doesn’t make you any better of a person. It is not there to separate the “winners form the losers.” Getting a college degree is a great thing that takes lots of discipline and I admire anyone who can stick to it!!!

    However, if you do not have a degree, you are still capable of great things!!! You still have a value in society!!! Nobody is inherently “better” than you because they went to school! If you went straight into the workforce and are still making your money and on that grind, good for you!

    Whatever you do, as long as you aren’t a menace to society, you’re great and I support you! Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. ??

    There are a lot of things that keep someone from going to school. I am not going to let this girltell me that I am LESS because I don’t know if I want to finish school at this point in my life. I am a good student, but I am also a good employee. I’m a work in progress who doesn’t know what I want to do with my life yet. I’m taking a couple classes and focusing on MY happiness so I can be the best version of myself – and that’s okay for me and it’s okay for you too!!!

  3. As a student, I feel like I’m walking around with my GPA inked on my body like a serial number to be scanned on a shelf. Employers only want people with experience, but I can’t get experience without having a job.

    Someone did a social experiment and gave big company employers bad resumes while hiding the name of the applicant. Every employer said they wouldn’t hire those people because of lack of experience and low GPA. After each employer went through the resumes, the interviewer revealed the names of the applicants – they were all present day celebrities for their successful businesses and careers. The resumes the employers were looking through were the celebrities’ first resumes.

    It shows how wrapped up society is in the numbers. I’m more than the numbers slapped on my face. There’s more to me than my test scores. There’s more to me than my degree. Just because I’m not able to learn by America’s present-day standardized education system doesn’t mean I can’t serve my community and be successful. If nobody had given those celebrities a chance when they were young, they wouldn’t have been where they are making a difference today. I wish they would give me a chance so I could show them what I can do.

  4. There are plenty of doctors with PhDs who shouldn’t be practicing… I’ve had too many bad experiences and too many poor surgeries that cost me too much money…just because you have a PhD doesn’t mean you’re intelligent or invulnerable to error. If anything, it means you’re fortunate enough to be able to think like society wants you to – not that that’s a bad thing, just that we all don’t learn the same way and our education tends to lean toward only one method of teaching.

  5. I know I said I wouldn’t answer the question, but that is when I didn’t have an answer.
    Our society puts so much value into “intelligence”, but this intelligence is judged through schooling and tests more often than actual problem solving. This leads to students more focused on grades than anything else, which leads to cheating and any other number of issues.
    I would take the value out of these things, or at least put value into other parts of society. Wisdom, problem solving, creativity. Things that the “traditionally smart” kind of people simply are not good at doing. Because as our society evolves, we learn more and more every day that everyone is different. Everyone has their strengths and their talents. A good mathematician is not necessarily a good engineer, and a good engineer is not necessarily a good artist. They are all people. And their strengths lay in their individuality.

    1. If I might address an inaccuracy in your statement. Our society puts too much value on the appearance of intelligence, but not enough value on actual cogency.

      1. @Drew Heyen, adding to that then, a good student geoscientist isnt necessarily an articulate keyboard warrior xD

        1. @Liam Norris, I was thinking more in terms of how important the prols seem to think “being right” is, but how insignificant all the little details of addressing what is right are.

  6. I think intelligence is being able to use the knowledge that you’ve acquired. Everything that you’ve learned in school and out of school, being able to use that in any given situation. Intelligence is a difficult thing to measure because there are many different types of intelligence. All throughout history people have tried to come up with many different tests to measure intelligence and not one of them is able to account for all of the different types of intelligence that exist.

  7. I think intelligence is a combination of curiosity, wisdom, and aptitude. It is the force that drives us to learn and explore. It informs our decisions. It shows what we are good at or enjoy most. The most “intelligent” people I know love the constant search for knowledge, and use that knowledge to make the world better.

  8. I believe intelligence is the ability to establish and develop your own beliefs. When people choose to blindly follow the beliefs of their parents or peers, stereotypes, racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. can persist. It is when a person is able to acknowledge the intolerance occurring around them and choose to make a difference rather than follow in another’s footsteps that they achieve intelligence.

  9. I don’t think you should be considered ‘intelligent’ for being associated with a political party. Just because you’re a Democrat or a Republican doesn’t make you smart just because you call yourself that. You’re intelligent when you listen with an open mind and accept that your beliefs are fluid and can change. True intelligence lies not in the name, but in the ability to look beyond your perspective.

  10. I would say for “intelligence” to be a person’s ability to understand the world around them and use that knowledge to make a meaningful contribution and impact

  11. Always remember, language is an imperfect tool. Words are designed to express ideas, but they are not, themselves ideas. “intelligence” is just a word. It is a word which we use to express a number of concepts. The word itself is none of those concepts. There is no final “right” or “wrong” when it comes to words. All that matters is the clearest communication of concepts, that is possible. Do Not Get Tied up in “Definitions”.

  12. To keep it short: I think intelligence is all of the above. Its showing the willingness to best explain a cause and effect with the assumption always looming that 1. There may be still be an unknown that has not been considered leading to 2. You might me wrong and might need to redraft your perspective on the data. This takes training, practice, and humility-also takes a society that keeps a compassionate resistance on the ‘thinkers’.

  13. To me, intelligence expands beyond IQ and standardized tests. Intelligence should be defined as one’s ability to look beyond yourself and to question and consider the thoughts and details of the outside world that is not “you.” Einstein did terribly in school, made bad grades, and didn’t do well in standardized tests, and yet he is considered one of the greatest geniuses of the nation. Intelligence isn’t defined by how well you can memorize and copy formulas and articulate syntax. Intelligence is questioning. It’s observing. Looking beyond yourself to answer the unanswerable.

  14. Being intelligent is usually considered a good thing. I think that sometimes people overlook how it can be damaging. People can get greedy and want things from you. It could be harmful to know everything and everyone having to depend on you. Thats alot of stress, and that can damage you. Also, depending on the person, may never get to experience or think like a “less intelligent” individual. At last, I would strip away any connotation with the word good…sometimes, ignorance is bliss.

  15. I would say that grades, instinct, and an open mind all belong in a new definition along with cleverness and ability to grasp new concepts. What I wouldn’t include is test performance.

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