groundbreaking book that upends conventional thinking about autism and
suggests a broader model for acceptance, understanding, and full
participation in society for people who think differently.
What is autism? A lifelong
disability, or a naturally occurring form of cognitive difference akin to
certain forms of genius? In truth, it is all of these things and more—and
the future of our society depends on our understanding it. WIRED
reporter Steve Silberman unearths the secret history of autism, long
suppressed by the same clinicians who became famous for discovering it, and
finds surprising answers to the crucial question of why the number of
diagnoses has soared in recent years.
Going back to the earliest days of autism research and chronicling the brave
and lonely journey of autistic people and their families through the
decades, Silberman provides long-sought solutions to the autism puzzle,
while mapping out a path for our society toward a more humane world in which
people with learning differences and those who love them have access to the
resources they need to live happier, healthier, more secure, and more
Along the way, he reveals the untold story of Hans Asperger, the father of
Asperger’s syndrome, whose “little professors” were targeted by the darkest
social-engineering experiment in human history; exposes the covert campaign
by child psychiatrist Leo Kanner to suppress knowledge of the autism
spectrum for fifty years; and casts light on the growing movement of "neurodiversity"
activists seeking respect, support, technological innovation, accommodations
in the workplace and in education, and the right to self-determination for
those with cognitive differences."