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OPINION

Opinion / Q&A

Beyond the bench: A conversation with William Mandy

by  /  20 October 2020

William Mandy talks about the golden hours for writing and why — when there isn’t a pandemic — he likes attending conferences in new parts of the world.

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Opinion / Viewpoint
Ilustration shows a young women with pillows, pies and records flying around her.

Book Review: An autistic writer recounts the fun and futility of trying to fit in

by  /  13 October 2020
In “I Overcame My Autism and All I Got Was This Lousy Anxiety Disorder,” Sarah Kurchak weaves together jagged honesty, funny anecdotes and occasionally painful doses of self-awareness.
Opinion / Viewpoint
A child wearing headphones looking into his locker with bullies lurking behind him.

Why it is imperative to ask autistic adolescents about bullying

by ,  /  6 October 2020
Being bullied puts adolescents with autism at increased risk of suicide. Identifying and preventing bullying may help prevent suicides.
Opinion / Q&A
Photograph taken by drone shows Anthony ZAdor and his son running alongside the water.

Beyond the bench: A conversation with Tony Zador

by  /  29 September 2020
Neuroscientist Tony Zador discusses the enigma of the human brain, the ‘aha’ moments of running and why a ski resort is a good place for a scientific conference.

Latest Opinion

The knight Perceval leaves his mother in extreme distress, oblivious to his effect, as he rides into the distance.
Opinion / Viewpoint

The perils of suggesting famous historical figures had autism

by ,  /  22 September 2020

Looking for signs of autism in characters from history and literature can offer insight into society’s changing perceptions through time — but it can also increase the risk of stigma against people with the condition.

Illustration shows information flowing from family (parents and child) into algorithm .
Opinion / Viewpoint

Listening to parents can curtail autism’s diagnostic odyssey

by ,  /  15 September 2020

Surveys of parents’ impressions of their child’s emotional and behavioral problems can improve autism screening and shorten waitlists for diagnostic evaluations.

People reaching out to touch hands through screen.
Opinion / Viewpoint

We need better strategies to support autistic people as the COVID-19 crisis continues

by  /  8 September 2020

Interviews with autistic people reveal that many miss their friends and opportunities for social connection, in stark contrast to orthodox views that they have little social motivation and prefer a life of self-isolation.

young autistic girl in playroom with a tennis ball that matches her yellow dyed hair.
Opinion / Q&A

Inside a summer camp for autistic children in Russia

by  /  1 September 2020

Photographs show how a camp in St. Petersburg this summer helped children on the spectrum and their families find some fun during the pandemic.

Photo-based illustration shows woman with a dress matching the wallpaper behind her, holding a mask.
Opinion / Q&A

Spotting the problems with ‘camouflaging’ in autism research

by  /  25 August 2020

Eric Fombonne spoke with Spectrum about the possibilities that autism is overdiagnosed in adults and that camouflaging traits is not unique to the condition.

Opinion / Reviews

Review: ‘Love on the Spectrum’ is kind, but unrepresentative

by  /  18 August 2020

The Netflix series that follows 20-something autistic adults looking for love is well intentioned but fails to capture reality and is riddled with bad advice.

A plate with a slice of yellow cake sits on a blue plate on a light blue table cloth, surrounded by spoons and forks. This image places an emphasis on food and ritualized behaviors.
Opinion

Autism and eating disorders may have an emotional connection

by , ,  /  12 August 2020

Eating disorders have the highest mortality rates of any kinds of mental illness. They don’t discriminate, affecting people of all ethnicities, sexualities, gender identities, ages and backgrounds.

Collage illustration showing Lucina Uddin portrait with eye movements and brain images
Opinion / Q&A

Rethinking ‘noise’ in autism research

by  /  11 August 2020

Lucina Uddin says researchers should be cautious when analyzing their findings, because ‘noisy’ data may actually hold important information about brain functioning.

Matt Lerner playing the sax in his year
Opinion / Q&A

Beyond the bench: A conversation with Matthew Lerner

by  /  4 August 2020

Since the pandemic began, Matthew Lerner and his team have become part of a massive experiment on maintaining social connection at a distance.

Pen and ink drawings by a father and daughter in a. sketchbook
Opinion / Q&A

On the same page: Divorce, drawing, and parenting an autistic child

by  /  28 July 2020

Shared sketch books chart a father-daughter relationship over time and provide a valuable outlet for self-regulating emotions.

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