The term neurodiversity was coined by Judy Singer in 1998. A lot has changed in the two decades since that first essay about neurological differences was published in The Atlantic . The neurodiversity movement has burgeoned through grassroots organization among people interested in social change. It's gradually making space for itself in government, research, and education . As Steve Silberman argues in his book Neuro-Tribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity , “Neurodiversity advocates propose that instead of viewing this gift as an error of nature—a puzzle to be solved and eliminated with techniques like prenatal testing and selective abortion—society should regard it as a valuable part of humanity’s genetic legacy while ameliorating aspects of autism that can be profoundly disabling without adequate forms of support.” Philosophically, the neurodiversity movement is based on what we might call cerebral pluralism—the idea that each brain is … [Read more...] about Neurodiversity: The Movement
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In 2013, personality disorder afficionados reviewing the newly released Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , 5th Edition (DSM-5), noticed a unique classification. Schizoptypal Personality Disorder would be considered both as a personality disorder and as part of a non-personality category: Schizophrenia and Related Disorders. Recognized in some form since at least 1668 (Millon, 1996), it seems this puzzling condition has taxonomically come full circle, and it remains mysterious. Source: Gabby-K/Pexels Dementia Praecox to Schizophrenia Phenotype Psychiatric researchers in the 1800s considered the appearance in adolescence of chronic, emotionally detached, eccentric-thinking presentations as indicative of a precocious onset of Dementia Praecox. This was an earlier term for Schizophrenia, which usually surfaces in the 20s to early 30s. In the early 1900s, Eugen Bleuler realized most early-onset cases didn’t lead to progressive … [Read more...] about Schizophrenia or Schizotypal Personality?
Source: Wikimedia Commons This is the second part of a two-part posting. To read Part 1, click here . At the same time, we human beings are eternally hoping and waiting for someone to save us from our existential predicament, and we tend to project these hopes onto some celebrity, leader , guru, teacher, therapist, etc. Psychologically speaking, consciously or unconsciously, we all seek a savior, a messiah. This archetypal tendency can be seen as an expression of what existential therapist Irvin Yalom refers to as the universal hope for an "ultimate rescuer": an omnipotent force or being that unconditionally loves and protects us from the vagaries and vicissitudes of existence in ways similar to those of a good parent. Someone who will rescue us from the burden of our existential aloneness, freedom, and responsibility. Relieve our existential suffering. Belief in and blind allegiance to such a messiah figure allows us to slough off our freedom and personal … [Read more...] about The Savior, the Devil, and Donald Trump
Holding Our Breath During the multiple global crises marked perhaps most notably by the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the focus has rightfully been on our shared problems and potential solutions. I recall the beginning of the pandemic when we all wondered how soon we would “get back to normal.” I’ve since set that idea aside, realizing that a return to yesterday is never possible. Rather than a return to the past, the hope is for a brighter future: one whose wisdom is founded in a deep understanding of what we’ve been through together. As the pandemic began in mid-March of 2020, my co-author Cynthia Vinney and I rather quietly published a book, Finding Truth in Fiction (Shackleford & Vinney, 2020). This book is the culmination of years of hard but joyful labor. It describes our human affinity for shared stories, like film and television franchises, and how they help us discover realities and perspectives about life, the universe, and everything. It is a … [Read more...] about Feeling Bad When Good Things Happen During Crises