I Don’t Believe in Autism
The conversation about what truly constitutes “autism” is an ongoing one. Although I resist the label personally, I do not begrudge anyone for identifying as autistic, or seeking out an autism diagnosis. Leaving this discussion within the domain of medicine is limiting. That’s why a new discourse is emerging, not among doctors, but among activists who push for autistic self-advocacy.
How Stigma and Social Factors Drive the Negative Health Outcomes Associated...
A new study explores the interplay between social stress and quality of life for individuals self-identified with high-functioning autism.
Neurodiversity is Dead. Now What?
The neurodiversity movement is a public relations campaign that emphasizes the positive qualities associated with some presentations of autism—creativity, increased tolerance for repetition, enhanced empathy, and exceptional memory—while erasing or minimizing the experiences of autistics who are severely disabled.
What Is “Normal” Anyway?
From Scientific American: Although "normal" technically means average or typical, both researchers and the general public often view normality as a standard we should all...
The Autism Paradox
In this piece for Aeon, Bonnie Evans chronicles the history of the diagnosis of autism, from its establishment as a marker of dysfunction and impairment to the...
Histories of Violence: Neurodiversity and the Policing of the Norm
In this interview for the Los Angeles Review of Books, cultural theorist and philosopher Erin Manning discusses neurodiversity, a movement that seeks to depathologize traits, experiences, and...
Bonnie Burstow and Nick Walker: An Introduction to Cognitive Liberty
This week on the Mad in America Podcast we launch our series on forced treatment, interviewing antipsychiatry scholar Bonnie Burstow and neurodiversity scholar Nick Walker. Central to both Nick and Bonnie’s work is the concept of cognitive liberty, or freedom and integrity of the mind.
Take a Flyer Off a Wall: Six Hours in the Hole
Once your body enters a police car or an ambulance, it doesn’t matter what labels you carry or what the apparent “symptoms” are. It doesn’t matter if you even have any label at all. The moment you acquire a mental illness is when someone who doesn’t like you decides that you have one.