There are multiple different definitions of intelligence, however there is one definition by which it is typically defined. This definition states that it is the capacity of which a person can learn, process, and adapt to information in their environment. An intelligent person typically is better at problem solving, grasping concepts, focusing their attention, reasoning, and have a good working memory. Intelligence is dependent on culture, though. What is seen as intelligence in one culture may vary in another culture. For example, in the United States of America, intelligence is centered around mathematics and good grades. Intelligence in another culture might be centered around problem-solving of a different nature, such as how to direct water towards a village. (Sternberg & Sternberg, 2012)
Theory of Multiple Intelligences
Howard Gardner proposed the theory of multiple intelligences in 1983, due to not believing that intelligence was as easily defined as the definition I gave previously. He proposed that intelligence can encompass many different areas, such as existential, musical, kinesthetic, visual-spatial, interpersonal, intrapersonal, linguistic, logical, and naturalistic. Interpersonal and intrapersonal involve one’s ability to be aware of others’ emotions, behaviors, and believes and their own. (Conti, 2021)
I think to say that emotional intelligence is not an accurate measure of intelligence would be silly. Even by the generic definition of intelligence, a musician with musical intelligence has to be able to learn from their past experiences of playing music, process that information, and adapt it to the new musical number they are working on. The same goes for emotional intelligence. In order to accurately read people, one must be able to learn from previous experiences of similar people, process how that information is going to apply now, and adapt their abilities to interact with people. Being able to communicate effectively with other individuals is important. You could be a doctor with all of the knowledge in the world on hip replacement surgery, but if you cannot effectively communicate with the person who needs the surgery, how could you convince them to go through with it?
Conti, H. (2021). Multiple Intelligences. Salem Press Encyclopedia.
Sternberg, R. J., & Sternberg K. (2012). Cognition and intelligence. In Cognitive psychology (6th ed., pp. 17–22). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.