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The mid twentieth century saw the rise of mathematicians and physicists who looked and behaved in a markedly youthful style, and this boy-genius stereotype spread to include most other branches of science. My suspicion is that that a personality type characterized by prolonged youthfulness is advantageous not just in science, but in most areas of modern life due to its need for flexible specialization. We are witnessing the evolution of ‘psychological-neoteny’, in which ever-more people retain for ever-longer the characteristic behaviours and attitudes of earlier developmental stages.

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