Pardon Our Notes: Things to Read

The first thing any good research project does, apparently, is BREED CITATIONS LIKE RABBITS.  Some notes on what I need to pick up from the library, based on what I’ve read so far.  Of no practical use to anyone but myself, but a potential source of curious amusement to the 2.5 other academics in the world who are into all this.

(Please excuse my indifference to citation styles.)

<b>Autism, Rhetoric, Narrative & Discourse</b>

Bagatell, N. “Orchestrating Voices: Autism, Identity and the Power of Discourse.” <i>Disability & Society</i> 22(4): 413-26.

Biklen D, Attfield R, Bissonnette L, et al. <i>Autism and the Myth of the Person Alone</i>. New York: NYUP (2005).

Corder, Jim W. “A New Introduction to Psychoanalysis, Taken as a Version of Modern Rhetoric.” <i>Pre/Text</i> 5.3-4 (1984): 137-69.

Cowen, Tyler. “Autism as Academic Paradigm.” <i>Chronicle of Higher Education</i>. Chronicle of Higher Education, 13 July 2009.

Donnellan AM (ed). <i>Classic Readings in Autism</i>. New York: Teachers College Press (1985).

Garland Thomson, Rosemarie. <i>Extraordinary Bodies: Figuring Physical Disability in American Culture and Literature</i>. NY: Columbia UP (1997).

Jurecic, Ann. “Neurodiversity.” <i>College English</i> 69.5 (2007): 421-42.

Lewiecki-Wilson C. “Rethinking Rhetoric Through Mental Disabilities.” <i>Rhetoric Review</i> 22(2) (2003): 156-67.

Nadesan MH. <i>Constructing Autism: Unraveling the “Truth” and Understanding the Social</i>. NY: Routledge (2005).

Osteen, Mark (ed.) <i>Autism and Representation</i>. NY: Routledge (2008).

Rossetti Z, Ashby C, Arndt K, et al. “I Like Others to Not Try to Fix Me: Agency, Independence, and Autism. <i>Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities</i> 46(5) (2008): 364-375.

Smukler, David. “Unauthorized Minds: How ‘Theory of Mind’ Theory Misrepresents Autism.” <i>Mental Retardation</i> 43.1 (2005): 11-24.

Straus, Joseph N. <i>Normalizing the Abnormal: Disability in Music and Music Theory</i>. Ne York: Graduate Center, 2004.

Waltz, Mitzi. “Reading Case Studies of People With Autistic Spectrum Disorders: A Cultural Studies Approach to Issues of Disability Representation.” <i>Disability & Society</i> 20.4 (2005): 421-35.

—. “Metaphors of Autism, and Autism as Metaphor: An Exploration of Representation.” Second Global Conference. <i></i> 2003.


Albury, W.R. “From Changeling to Space Alien: Popular Culture and the ‘Otherness’ of the Autistic Person.” <i>Building Bridges: Proceedings of the 1995 National Autism Conference</i>. Brisbane: Autistic Children’s Association of Queensland, 1995. 1-6.

Bourke, A. <i>The Burning of Bridget Cleary</i>. London: Pimlico, 1999.

Briggs, Katharine. <i>An Encyclopedia of Fairies</i>. New York (1976).

—. <i>The Vanishing People</i>. New York (1978).

Haffter, Carl. “The Changeling: History and Psychodynamics of Attitudes to Handicapped Children in European Folklore.” <i>Journal of the History of the Behavioral Sciences</i> 3.4 (1967-8): 56.

Hartland, E.S. <i>The Science of Fairy Tales</i>. London, 1891.

Kanner, Leo. <i>History of the Care and Study of Mental Retardation</i> (Springfield, Ill, 1964).

Persaud, TVN. <i>Problems of Birth Defects</i>. Baltimore (1977).

Quinn-Curan, Noreen, and Stefi Rubin. “Lost, Then Found: Parents’ Journey Through the Community Service Maze.” <i>The Family With a Handicapped Child</i> (Milton Seligman, ed.) New York (1983).

Ivonne van Amstel, <i>Fairy Child: The Baby and Toddler Years of an Autistic Girl</i>


About Dani Alexis

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5 Responses to Pardon Our Notes: Things to Read

  1. Maybe I’m one of those 2.5 people? (Or How I Spent My Summer Deconstructing Autism…).

    Anyway, here are several more I’ve recently run across you might not have seen:

    Worlds of autism : across the spectrum of neurological difference / Joyce Davidson and Michael Orsini, editors.2013. University of Minnesota Press, (This one I’ve read. The editors have coined the phrase “critical autism studies”. I particularly liked the essays by Majia Nadesan and Kristina Chew,, the latter one turning to Walter Benjamin’s framing of translation as a way to understand communicating with the author’s non-verbal son).

    Representing autism : culture, narrative, fascination / Stuart Murray. Liverpool : Liverpool University Press, 2008

    Ian Hacking, various essays. See his Making Up People Project page at Examples from there:

    Autism Fiction: A mirror of an Internet decade? University of Toronto Quarterly 79 (2010): 632-655.

    How we have been learning to talk about autism: A role for stories. Metaphilosophy 40 (2009): 499-516.

  2. Dani Alexis says:

    Always glad to meet one of the 2.5. What have you been deconstructing? I’ve been exploring various binaries built on “speech” (speech/writing, speech/echolalia, speech/listening, etc.) in the autism context but it’s slow going.

  3. The short version of the tale is that I recently got started exploring the extent to which I”m on the spectrum, and quickly leapt from that into helping plan events for a campus book project this upcoming school year centered around Temple Grandin’s Thinking in Pictures. In so doing I’m learning how weirdly convoluted the discourse, rhetoric, and science is around autism. Lately I’m pondering how cognitive neuroscience, the dominant way in thinking about mind/brain stuff these days, misses phenomena that are key, e.g. that social interactions always take place within the context of culture. So maybe I’m headed towards deconstructing the science.

  4. Dani Alexis says:

    I love this idea, particularly as I’m not a scientist and so am utterly unequipped to do it. 🙂 And it’s a wide-open field right now; plenty of foundational material exists for just about any theoretical approach, but the conversation on autism has really just started.

    Two articles from the literature side of the fence that you might enjoy:

    Ralph James Savarese and Lisa Zunshine, “The Critic as Neurocosmopolite; Or, What Cognitive Approaches to Literature Can Learn from Disability Studies.” Narrative 22.1 (2014), 17-44.

    Although literature professors, the authors deal with the rhetoric/discourse of cognitive neuroscience and autism as well, with the whole cultural-consideration thing that critical disability studies loves so much.

    John Duffy and Rebecca Dorner, “The Pathos of ‘Mindblindness’: Autism, Science, and Sadness in ‘Theory of Mind’ Narratives.” Journal of Literary & Cultural Disability Studies 5.2 (2011), 201-216.

    Particularly-interesting-but-not-quite-in-my-wheelhouse: the authors discuss the work of Baron-Cohen and others on “mindblindness,” or the idea that autistic people can’t understand that other human beings have thoughts and motivations. One thing I found particularly striking was a passage in which one researcher attempted to portray what the world must be like for the mindblind. It reads to me a great deal like what the world is like in a state of sensory disintegration – which makes me wonder if the behavior Baron-Cohen et al. are attributing to “mindblindness” isn’t actually an inability to understand that other humans have thoughts as it is an inability to parse a certain pile of disintegrated sensory experiences as a single (human) entity. Heaven knows I’m not likely to attribute human motivations to something I *don’t perceive as a human being*, even though I fully understand that other humans think and feel things.

  5. Thanks for the two citations — I’ll add them to the ever-growing pile. It probably would be greatly worthwhile for me to dive into the “mindblindness” story, especially since there’s the countering view that the work in cognitive psychology the story is based upon is simply bad research (for an example of this countering view, see Gernsbacher M. A., & Frymiere, J. (2005). Does the autistic brain lack core modules? Journal of Developmental and Learning Disorders, 9, 3-16.).
    I don’t have particular training in neuroscience, but in a previous life I studied zoology, so I do have a general background in biology, and have had a long-standing though intermittent interest in cognitive science.

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