NeuroTribes: We Read It

[image: black and white photo of a white teen boy holding
the book NeuroTribes, in front of bookstore shelves.]
You probably know, if you know us, that a chapter in Steve Silberman's new book NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity is about Leo. The chapter is called "The Boy Who Loves Green Straws," and is excerpted here, at Science Friday(!!). 

NeuroTribes has been out for about a month, and triggered a laudatory avalanche the likes of which I've rarely seen. (Google "NeuroTribes"  if you don't believe me.)

I have many thoughts on the book. Mostly gratitude, for moving the public conversation about autism in the direction I'd like to see it go, and for calling out influential assholes who've harmed autistic people both in the present and in the past. Also for telling people to listen to and support autistic people, instead of every other shitty thing folks tend to do instead.

It's also odd, to see a snapshot of our family from several years ago. The snapshot is accurate, temporally, but it's also not where we are now. We learned so much to get to that place of acceptance, and we've kept learning -- mostly from autistic people -- especially about Leo's innate and irrevocable personhood. I'll try to write more about that.

In the meantime, I suggest reading what a few autistic people have to say about the book, in the form of praise (Patricia George-Zwicker), fair critique (Chavisory), and interviewing Mr. Silberman (Alex Plank).

As far as the Rosenberg reviews go, Iz & Seymour have read the book already. Seymour mostly shares my opinions, including about our personal odd time capsule vibe, and Iz thinks the book is good but makes her sound boring (I don't agree, but I'm not her). Leo, Mali, and I are listening to the audio version in the car. We've only just begun, so Leo hasn't had much of a reaction yet. Mali was thrilled to hear Silberman's expansive definition of neurodiversity, but also wants to know when she gets to hear the part that's about her.

As always, interested in your thoughts.

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