Neurodiversity

Neurodiversity

Discovering the Extraordinary Gifts of Autism, ADHD, Dyslexia, and Other Brain Differences

Book - 2010
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Baker & Taylor
Reframes many neuropsychological disorders as part of the natural diversity of the human brain rather than as definitive illnesses and shows how people with ADHD, bipolar disorder and other conditions have evolutionary advantages that, matched with the appropriate environment, can help them achieve dignity and wholeness in their lives. By the award-winning author of 7 Kinds of Smart.

Perseus Publishing
A new term has emerged from the disability movement in the past decade to help change the way we think about neurological disorders: Neurodiversity.

ADHD. Dyslexia. Autism. The number of categories of illnesses listed by the American Psychiatric Association has tripled in the past fifty years. With so many people affected by our growing ?culture of disabilities,” it no longer makes sense to hold on to the deficit-ridden idea of neuropsychological illness.

With the sensibility of Oliver Sacks and Kay Redfield Jamison, psychologist Thomas Armstrong offers a revolutionary perspective that reframes many neuropsychological disorders as part of the natural diversity of the human brain rather than as definitive illnesses. Neurodiversity emphasizes their positive dimensions, showing how people with ADHD, bipolar disorder, and other conditions have inherent evolutionary advantages that, matched with the appropriate environment or ecological niche, can help them achieve dignity and wholeness in their lives.


Bestselling author Thomas Armstrong reframes the debate about neurodiversity, offering current research on brain differences while pinpointing the gifts of people with neuropsychological disorders.


Blackwell Publishing
"Parents, teachers, and policy makers should all read this thought-provoking book. I loved it."---Temple Grandin, author of Thinking in Pictures

A new term has surfaced in the past decade to change the way we think about neurological disorders: Neurodiversity. It is just the right word at the right time to account for recent evidence from brain science, evolutionary psychology, and other fields suggesting that, amid the damage and dysfunction appearing in the brains of people with mental health labels, there are bright, shining spots of promise and possibility. This revolutionary guide offers information such as:

A passionate, compassionate, and practical look at the myriad strengths of those who are "differently abled," Neurodiversity is essential reading for parents, educators, mental health professionals, and anyone intrigued by how our brains work and what secrets they hold.

"A major work---revolutionary and humane. Drawing on the latest scientific evidence, Dr. Armstrong argues convincingly that the `disease-based model' needs to be replaced by an understanding of brain differences that characterize neuropsychological conditions. Armstrong gives voice to many within the neurodiverse community, and challenges us to celebrate their strengths. This book could not be more timely."---Michele Borba, EdD, educational psychologist and author of The Big Book of Parenting Solutions

"In this engaging, accessible book, Armstrong offers a thoughtful consideration of cognitive diversity, and many practical suggestions for maximizing the potential of, and increasing respect for, those who are `differently brained'"---Kathleen Seidel, creator of Neurodiversity.com

"Instead of pretending that there is hidden away in a vault somewhere a perfectly `normal' brain to which all other brains must be compared, we need to admit that there is no standard brain, just as there is no standard flower, or standard cultural or racial group, and that, in fact, diversity among brains is just as wonderfully enriching as biodiversity and the diversity among cultures and races."---from the Introduction

With the number of categories of illness listed by the American Psychiatric Association tripling in the past fifty years, we are now a "culture of disabilities"---with the attendant stereotypes about autism, learning disabilities, and a host of other neuropsychological conditions. Award-winning author and psychologist Thomas Armstrong offers a groundbreaking perspective on the outdated, deficit-ridden idea of neuropsychological variations among individuals: brain differences in people with diagnostic labels can be sources of intelligence and strength. Neurodiversity, Armstrong's revelatory new book, offers the most up-to-date research showing how people with conditions such as ADHD, autism, dyslexia, mood disorders, and anxiety disorders have inherent evolutionary advantages.

At once a popular course on brain differences, a manifesto on neurodiversity presenting the brain as an ecosystem that adapts to different environments, and a compilation of current research on the gifts and abilities of individuals with mental health labels, Neurodiversity presents a radical, positive, and timely approach to our perceptions of neuropsychological conditions.

"An engaging and provocative look into the emerging societal conversation about neurological diversity. Our country has adapted to many new ideas over the last century; acceptance of the broad scope of neurodiversity represents the next step forward."

Baker
& Taylor

Reframes many neuropsychological disorders as part of the natural diversity of the human brain rather than as definitive illnesses and shows how people with ADHD, bipolar disorder and other conditions have evolutionary advantages.
In "The Gift of Neurodiversity", Armstrong argues that we have been too quick to pathologise brain differences. Indeed, in recent years, we have re-classified these differences, labeling many of them "disorders." What science actually suggests is that there are many different ways for our brains to be wired, and that there are actual "gifts" or "strengths" attached to some of these differences.

Publisher: Cambridge, MA : Da Capo Lifelong, 2010
Edition: 1st Da Capo Press ed
ISBN: 9780738213545
0738213543
Branch Call Number: 616.8 A
Characteristics: xi, 275 p. ;,24 cm

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Reframes many neuropsychological disorders as part of the natural diversity of the human brain rather than as definitive illnesses and shows how people with ADHD, bipolar disorder and other conditions have evolutionary advantages that, matched with the appropriate environment, can help them achie... Read More »


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happygirl15 May 10, 2012

Recommended - Worth a read if you are interested in education, the brain, evolution or personal development. Incredible book that makes us question what society and our fears define as deficits or disabilities in individuals because we can't process them through our factory-line educational system. Are these differences just part of evolution? What would happen if we looked at their differences POSITIVELY - as strengths - like the software testing company that outperforms every competitor because their staff of "autistic" adults is so detail-oriented? It is my experience that best practices for special ed kids are also best practices for "regular" kids. EVERY person has strengths and weaknesses and our educational system will always be poor until that reality is addressed and processes are altered.

CSchmidt1 Dec 05, 2011

This was a great book that challenges readers to see the gifts that are inherent in people whose attributes are typically viewed from a medical (deficit/abnormality) perspective. As an individual who works in special education (which all education should be), I highly recommend this book. At the start of this book, the author recounts how he would prepare for I.E.P. (Individual Education Plan) meetings by highlighting and summarizing every positive statement he found in a student's file. He would then share this with all of the participants at the start of the meeting. This was an effective way for him to shift the conversation to one of helping to maximize the individual's gifts rather than trying to re-mediate the deficits. This book does a great job of shifting the reader's perspective in the same way. A central tenet of this book is that successful individuals are those who can find or create a niche.

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