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Position Statement on Cures and Recoveries

January 11, 2009

For Immediate Release [first published on January 10, 2009]

The League to Fight Neurelitism, a public sociological advocacy and activist project, expresses skepticism concerning claims of recovery from autistic spectrum conditions. According to most neuroscientists, the autism spectrum, while likely influenced by certain environmental factors, is fundamentally a genetic, or a collection of genetic, differences.

What some writers may regard as recovery, we consider to be adaptation. Ostensibly, each of us, irrespective of whether she may fall on the autism spectrum, undergoes primary socialization, the internalization of one’s culture and subcultures during childhood, with the subsequent anticipatory socialization of adolescence and adulthood. Indeed, humans are not only biological and genetic organisims. As social beings, we continually develop in response to our interpersonal engagement.

As to the prospect of curing autism, we do not dismiss this possibility. We do, however, lament it. If autism presents challenges, they are substantially attributable to an absence of physical enablements. Given sufficient accommodation, even the term disability, which is itself constructed by lack of access, may ultimately disappear from the lexicon.

Autistics, as expressions of human neurodiversity, can, like all of us, make worthwhile contributions to their own societies. Many are gifted with an exceptional rationality and a facility for dispassionate evaluation, valuable characteristics which are, given the predominant popular psychology of emotional expression, frequently disparaged. Their differences add to the beauty of the human garden.

Respectfully submitted,

Mark A. Foster, Ph.D.
Founding Director,
The League to Fight Neurelitism



One Comment leave one →
  1. January 11, 2009 4:56 pm

    >>Many are gifted with an exceptional rationality and a facility for dispassionate evaluation<<

    I like that very much. Rose

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