Autism and me: a lifelong quest for Beingness and clemency of Being.
Guest lecture, 27 August 2015, School of Education, UNSW, Australia.
Thank you, Dr. Iva Strnadova, for inviting me to deliver this guest lecture since 2012. It has become an annual event I look forward to greatly.
I promised Iva I’ll tell as many personal stories as possible within the time limit, and so I shall. But before I launch into the dramatics, I’d like to begin with some basic terminology.
When I first began on my research journey, I adopted the prevalent deficits-focused, pathological perspectives and terminologies, because that was all I knew at the time. However, I henceforth prefer to use the term “Autism Spectrum Condition” instead of “disorder,” because this better describes the neurological culture that autism actually is. I also no longer use functioning labels – “high” or “low” functioning – as they are not only insulting to autistic persons, but more importantly they are based on a system of measurements that does not properly respect the innate autistic functional modalities and paradigms.
Now for my fabulous stories. Continue reading