The Polgar Variant

Is genius hereditary? Or can every child be groomed to be a genius? One brilliant (and controversial) father believes environment and training fosters genius. He attempts to prove his theory by raising all three of his young daughters to be world champions of chess. The engrossing Israeli documentary The Polgar Variantabout a family of Hungarian Jews living under Soviet communism before the Internet age, provides a fascinating (and largely sympathetic) glimpse into the process. If you’re a chess fan, you already know what became of the three sisters. If you’re not, the extraordinary story told here might make you one.

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