Conceptualizing Autism


I know I haven’t posted in awhile, and this isn’t really much of a post, but I just wanted to direct you to:

Conceptualizing Autism

Which is at Existence is Wonderful, and manages to clearly put into words a lot of things I’ve noticed but never been able to say all at once. (Something that Anne is talented at in general.)

Just one quote out of many good ones here. She talks of three different ways of looking at autism — in terms of neurological structure, in terms of lived experience, and in terms of outward behavior. Of the set of outward behavior normally used to recognize autistic people, she notes:

What is interesting, and perhaps a bit unnerving, is that this category is at once the one people tend to put the most stock in (in terms of identifying autistics, in terms of determining what educational supports we might need, etc.) and the one most subject to cultural biases, personal biases, misinformation, and the ever-changing social lens through which different kinds of people are generally viewed.

About Mel Baggs

Hufflepuff. Came from the redwoods, which tell me who I am and where I belong in the world. I relate to objects as if they are alive, but as things with identities and properties all of their own, not as something human-like. Culturally I'm from a California Okie background. Crochet or otherwise create constantly, write poetry and paint when I can. Proud member of the developmental disability self-advocacy movement. I care a lot more about being a human being than I care about what categories I fit into.

4 responses »

  1. Thank you for posting this. I cannot even begin to tell you how much your blog and those of other adults with autism have have taught me, and completely changed my view of autism. My autistic son will benefit because of what you’ve taught me. Stay strong!

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