October 2009 Archives

Steven Whiltshire, Artist

Here is a link to an article from today's NY Times about artist Steven Whiltshire's current work after a helicopter ride over NYC. He has an interesting story, and was the subject of one of Oliver Sacks' book chapters.


New studies on autism rates: 1 out of 100 (1%)

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New TV Series

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I was flipping channels the other day and came across this tv show:
http://health.discovery.com/tv/autismx6/tune-in.html

It's about a family that has 6 kids all with diagnoses on the autism spectrum

help on posting a blog entry!

hi
just to help clarify:

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1) once there, you can comment to an entry, by clicking on the comment button. it will ask you to sign in and then you can write your statement.

2) or go to http://blog.lib.umn.edu/
and click on start blogging. you will be offered the opportunity to create an entry (look on the top toolbar). remember to save and preview. it will post when you reload the blog.
also you may choose to change your profile (on the right side of the page). please make sure it says your name. 

Film on treatment

My thoughts on the movie "Refrigerator Mothers"

I learned from the movie that a refrigerator mother is someone who apparently rejected their child and was cold to them as they grew up, they drive their children further and further into autism. I thought this was really sad because mothers then think they have a problem spiritually and psychotically because people give them this stereotype that makes them think they didn't know how to raise their own child. Professionals called mothers psychotic when they really did have loving relationships with their children; autistic or not and that simply was not fair to be called something that could be so harmful. I found it interesting that white upper middle class and very very bright is the stereotypical mold for autism and blacks were labeled "emotionally disturbed" because they were assumed to not be educated, the colored mother in the movie couldn't even fit the "refrigerator mother" category because of her skin color. My favorite quote of the movie was, "Autistic people are whole people, but they are just from a different culture/planet." This is because it can raise a lot of controversy and create an interesting conversation/discussion that could possibly be brought up in class. This movie really opened my eyes to what a controversy this subject is especially in the past because in the movie it was mentioned that, mothers cannot overcome the bitterness because they were given this terrible label, they do all they can to change by volunteering and doing things like like, but they cannot dig deep into their soul to remove the bitterness because it is a permanent result of the analysis.

Refrigerator Mothers Response: Emily Brumley

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This movie really opened my eyes to the way autism was first viewed and treated in the United States.  What really shocked me were the early forms of treatment. Taking autistic children away from their mothers to special schools were they kick statues of mothers? Isolating these children?  How can treating children for a disorder which symptoms generally include dislike of human contact by isolating them help them to be better with human contact? It really makes no sense to me.  They were blaming mothers for not being loving enough and secretly wanting their children dead and their treatment options were exactly along those same lines, isolation and seperation. 

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