your dreams will be reduced down to breathing, and you will be grateful

Posted in featured, Society

The thing about not-being-a-person is:

They will say those people and the price of being a person is to nod and agree that yes, those people aren’t people at all.

They will have no idea who they are talking to.
You yourself will start to forget, too.
They will say a million small things that sow the seeds for violence done against you, and you will smile and let them.

You will do math, constantly.

How much do I want to be a person today? How much do I want this …

...[Read More]

on 03/5/12 | 2 Comments | Read More

The Post-Consumer Age

As economist Tyler Cowen discusses in his book Create Your Own Economy, today’s digital media are causing society to develop in what he characterizes as a more autistic direction. Instead of pa[Read More]

on 05/17/10 | No Comments | Read More

See Seven States!

There’s an implicit perspective behind most of what I write here at Shift, and I think behind much of what others contribute, a perspective that’s not exactly a secret, but one that I don’t thin[Read More]

on 05/14/10 | 1 Comment | Read More


On top of my bookshelf I keep a Prosperity Tree, which is by far the most ridiculous gimmicky item I own. It’s about the same height and width as my open hand and has pale blue silk flowers, a [Read More]

on 05/12/10 | No Comments | Read More

Lili Marlene discovers the cause of autism in between bringing the laundry in off the line and washing some dishes

I was recently perusing some back issues of science magazines, and I came across an article about an aspect of human genetics that is interesting but is not currently connected with any “cutting edg[Read More]

on 05/10/10 | No Comments | Read More

Mountain Goats of the Uncanny Valley

Now that the subject of autism and the uncanny valley has been laid on the table, I’d like to draw on that metaphor by sharing some further imagery that offers new ways to think about autistic peopl[Read More]

on 05/7/10 | 1 Comment | Read More

Strong Women and Social Change

Theory of mind, as Andrew Lehman explains, can be understood as a modern cognitive style that contrasts with the tendency of ancient matrifocal societies—and autistics—to engage in primary process[Read More]

on 05/6/10 | No Comments | Read More

Is misandry relevant to autism?

Is misandry relevant to autism? If Hans Asperger’s “extreme male brain” theory of autism is correct, then it seems to follow that neurotypical females, particularly NT females of the “empathiz[Read More]

on 05/5/10 | 7 Comments | Read More

A Changeling’s Alternate Reality Story

You ought to have known better than to walk out of your house, late at night on Halloween, while dark wisps of cloud were briskly blowing across a moonless sky. But your street looked quiet enough; th[Read More]

on 05/3/10 | No Comments | Read More

Autism and the Uncanny Valley

One of the first pieces I wrote for this site finished with a whimsical suggestion that autistic people were somewhat native to what is known as the uncanny valley, a term that refers to the revulsion[Read More]

on 04/30/10 | 3 Comments | Read More

The Benefit of the Doubt

Many books and articles have been published on the topic of what makes a marriage or relationship succeed. At the top of my list I’d put willingness to give the other person the benefit of the [Read More]

on 04/28/10 | No Comments | Read More

How far can autistic culture develop without excluding neurotypical people?

How far can autistic culture develop without excluding neurotypical people? For many years I have been married (to the same guy). It’s obvious to me that we are both on the autistic spectrum, even [Read More]

on 04/26/10 | 7 Comments | Read More

Passing For Neurotypical

Officially, we don’t exist. The hordes of psychological “experts” who regularly comment on the supposed near-impossibility of productive, independent lives and successful marriages among autisti[Read More]

on 04/23/10 | 3 Comments | Read More

Social Anxiety and Autism

I am aware I have a subtly different style of communication and can see how it contributes to social anxiety. I tend to stare at the floor and listen. This way, I can usually get the context of a co[Read More]

on 04/22/10 | 2 Comments | Read More

Abortion, Violence Against Women, and Autism

Modern society is changing in many ways that increase the autistic population. Andrew Lehman touched on one of them in a November post discussing the practices of sex-selective abortion and female in[Read More]

on 04/21/10 | 3 Comments | Read More

The Dark Side Of Theory Of Mind?

“Our reputation-conscious ancestors would have experienced a pervasive feeling of being watched and judged, he says, which they would readily have attributed to supernatural sources since the cognit[Read More]

on 04/20/10 | 1 Comment | Read More

The Road Less Travelled

We all know them, there is a certain tribe amongst us neuro diverse people who speak of cure and curse what they might have been but for the ‘demon’ of autism that possesses them. They tend to be [Read More]

on 04/19/10 | No Comments | Read More

You Could Be An Autistic Person If …

you are a very curious person, in both senses of the word you say goodbye to your husband in the morning as he goes off to work, and your heart leaps with joy at the prospect of spending the day home [Read More]

on 04/16/10 | 1 Comment | Read More

Tips For Socially Awkward Geeks (According to Stanford)

Or perhaps more accurately, according to a certain student at Stanford. Wait, shoot! I broke the rules! Philip Guo has a write-up of rules for the successful social interaction of geeks. Really hel[Read More]

on 04/14/10 | No Comments | Read More

Mark Ty-Wharton Speaks

You might not expect an adult diagnosed with autism to be a public speaker, especially an adult with a long history of social anxiety, who gets caught out by the occasional bout of depression. And whi[Read More]

on 04/12/10 | No Comments | Read More

How (and Why) to Use Framing in the Discussion of Autism

As is the case elsewhere, in the struggle over how autism is to be defined and understood, how a discussion is framed has more influence on the outcome of any conflicts that arise within that discussi[Read More]

on 04/9/10 | No Comments | Read More

Emotions: who is the expert and who is the dunce and what exactly are we talking about?

Over and over again I read that autistic people are disabled in the ability to understand not only the emotions of others, but also our own emotions. Could this mean that the subject of “emotions�[Read More]

on 04/7/10 | 2 Comments | Read More

Normie (part two)

In a part of his brain that he seldom communicated with, but fortunately, was ultimately in charge, he knew that the only way he was going to be able to live and support himself would be to join the N[Read More]

on 04/6/10 | No Comments | Read More

Normie (part one)

How he hated that name, how it made him shrink to hear it. For the longest time, he thought it was the cause of all his problems, the snickering, the disrespect he had endured. He cursed his mother [Read More]

on 04/6/10 | No Comments | Read More

Autism, Alloparents and Human Evolution

…This feels significant as it relates to autism. Several things come to mind. Autism studies have shown that firstborn children and children born to older mothers are more likely to have autis[Read More]

on 04/5/10 | No Comments | Read More

On Styles of Consciousness, Autism Included

“Whatever else it may be, autism is a way of being in the world. It is a style, a manner of behaving and perceiving, and of being perceived.” Classical Greece had a whole lexicon of different “[Read More]

on 04/2/10 | 11 Comments | Read More

Alloparents and Evolution

…considering that autism features individuals exhibiting the characteristics of our evolutionary forebears, and noting that the environment and child-rearing practices of those forebears might b[Read More]

on 04/1/10 | No Comments | Read More

Publicist: Must Be Willing to Out Prominent Autistics

Author Michael Lewis, as interviewed recently on NPR’s Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me: Alright, ah, the first, first investor to make a bet that this whole subprime mortgage bond experiment was a disa[Read More]

on 03/31/10 | 2 Comments | Read More

Accompanying the Metaphor

…Primary process is the experience of an ever-present now, with little ability to estimate different times or to consider more than one location at any one time, and no ability to imagine someth[Read More]

on 03/29/10 | 1 Comment | Read More

Virgil Caine’s Autism

Last November while weighing in on the proposed changes to the DSM which will drop Asperger’s Syndrome as a diagnostic category, I quoted George Carlin’s take on Catholicism’s Limbo as a way to [Read More]

on 03/26/10 | 2 Comments | Read More

A Tale of Two Rivers

[The following is an informal continuation of Laurence Arnold’s musings on autism as geography, featured recently in this space under the title Rainbows End.] I suppose I ought to comment on the cur[Read More]

on 03/25/10 | No Comments | Read More

« Older Entries   Newer Entries »