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lopezpor's avatar

What is an intellectual?

Asked by lopezpor (241points) June 9th, 2010

In the general sense…

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

14 Answers

Axarraekji's avatar

Someone you can trust, who has read many, many books (but can narrow his library to the books containing the most wisdom).

If you cannot trust the person, I do not believe he is intellectual! Why? You simply cannot trust anything he says.

There are stereotypes… e.g. a person can talk like an intellectual (use big words, have excellent communication skills); but that is not always the case!

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

“What a fine thing it is to have an intellect, and room enough in the seat of your breeches to hold it”-Mark Twain

lillycoyote's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille I knew there had to be a Mark Twain quote, at least one, probably more, on this subject but you saved me the trouble of looking it up.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

@lillycoyote -He did have alot to say about alot of things—cracks me up—:))

YARNLADY's avatar

There are many people who will deride the term, but an intellectual is most often a person who sees more in any given situation than most others will see. The current PC phrase is “thinks outside the box”. Example: When I say square, what do you think? A geometrically square shape; an unbiased person; something that is behind the times; a village green; a conformist; a bribe or payoff; a forthright person; an offer to adjust something; an apology; a meal? The intellectual will sort through many different meanings and try to match them to your question.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

An intellect listens.

That’s probably why I’ll never be considered as one.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar


Who would you say is closer to the Lunatic, an Intellectual, or a Genius?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I consider myself to be an intellectual person – so I’ll just provide my own definition as it pertains to me – it is someone who connects seemingly disparate topics or areas of inquiry or facts/stories/contributions by people into a coherent structure/matrix that makes sense out of all the points and one that never ceases to learn.

lillycoyote's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille He had an amazing mind, all the way round. Plus he was funny as hell.

augustlan's avatar

I like this definition: intellectual – a person who uses the mind creatively


YARNLADY's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies I can’t choose out of the three – In my experience, the genius has a much harder time choosing a “valid” response to most inquires, the intellectial can usually figure it out, and the Lunatic will be the wild card.

AstroChuck's avatar


Modest too.

YARNLADY's avatar

@AstroChuck I don’t think so

zenele's avatar

A curious layperson who knows his place.

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