Further reading

Last updated February 8th, 2016

This is a list of pages that cover topics so well that I don't care to redundantly write about them myself. Some of them describe my own life experiences. Because good information about autism is so hard to find, and so hard for newcomers to pick out from the bad, most of these are directly autism-related. The rest are tangential but can easily resonate with most Autistic people. While the list is mostly alphabetical, there are a few things that I put at the top for importance. Items are not duplicated to both lists.

I include the date above because this page is by nature a continuous work-in-progress. As Acting NT grows older, some information here may become outdated and need to be removed. However, a page not being listed here is not necessarily an indication that I don't like it; I probably just haven't come across it. Feel free to suggest additional links. Please tell me if any links are broken.

Angie the Anti-Theist (Angie Jackson): ABA, Autism, and A Call to Action
An explanation of why advocates say that ABA is child abuse (spoiler: Because ABA is child abuse.)

Autism Women's Network: What’s the Difference Between High Functioning and Low Functioning Autism?
A dissection of the assumptions made by ableist parents.

Autistic Self Advocacy Network: What is an ally?
An article about what it means to be an ally. It is not something you can decide to identify as, but a title to be earned.

Christine Miserandino: The Spoon Theory
The origin of spoons as used by the entire disabled community, particularly those with chronic illness or other invisible disabilities.

Letters From Aspergia: Fan diagnoses: finding our own fiction
An introduction to autistic headcanons, why they're important, and why they're better than canonically autistic characters. Mine are:
  • James the wafer All candy people, including the lemongrabs (Adventure Time)
  • The "I like trains" kid (asdfmovie)
  • Temperance "Bones" Brennan and Zack Addy (Bones)
  • Big Hat Logan (Dark Souls)
  • L and Near (Death Note)
  • Drax (Guardians of the Galaxy)
  • Hermione Granger (Harry Potter)
  • Yang Wen-li, Oberstein, and Eisenach (Legend of the Galactic Heroes)
  • Suzanne Warren (Orange Is the New Black)
  • Herman and Newton (Pacific Rim)
  • Ferb and Lawrence Fletcher (Phineas and Ferb)
  • Chell (Portal)
  • Dalila (Stars)
  • 5, 9, and 12 (Terror In Resonance)
  • Clementine (The Walking Dead)
  • MC Knows Too Many Facts About Bees (WTF Collective)
You can find more at yourfaveisautistic.tumblr.com.

Neurocosmopolitanism (Nick Walker): Throw Away the Master’s Tools: Liberating Ourselves from the Pathology Paradigm
An essay explaining why rejecting the medical model of autism, and its associated language, is absolutely imperative to the neurodiversity movement.

Neurotropes (Mike Scott):
On Presuming Competence in Criticism - An analysis of fictional depictions of autism, focusing on Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren from Orange Is the New Black. One particular paragraph has extreme relevance to the rejection of self-diagnosis and labels: "...autism is nothing more than a particular theory of mind–a cultural construction describing a neurological phenomenon we don’t actually know much about yet. In that case, any emergence of an autistic pattern that is identifiable is an emergence of autism..." (emphasis his)

Ollibean: Social model animation
A video explaining the social model of disability in under two minutes. Not comprehensive, but a great introduction.

The Polite Yeti: Revised alternative autism criteria
A diagnostic view of autism without the glaring inaccuracies and contrived negativity found in the DSM and ICD

Autistic Self Advocacy Network: "Before you donate to Autism Speaks, Consider the facts"
(1 of 3 - basic introduction) A flyer detailing the failures of Autism Speaks. Great for handing out since it's only one page.

Lucy Berrington: A Reporter's Guide to the Autism Speaks Debacle
(2 of 3 - expanded summary) An article in Psychology Today detailing the failures of Autism Speaks from an unbiased perspective.

The Caffeinated Autistic: New Autism Speaks Masterpost (Updated 6/20/14)
(3 of 3 - complete guide) Comprehensive list of the failures of Autism Speaks. Much more detailed than either the ASAN flyer or the Psychology Today article.


Alex and Ania 'Splain You a Thing (Alex Gonzalez and Ania Onion Cebulla):
A Crowbar for Normalcy - Why the privileged reject their own labels in favor of "normal"
Do You Have What It Takes to Party With Disabled Folk? - Ableism is not only discrimination in bureaucratic settings; it's also social exclusion.
Love That Does Not Accept Me - Problematic reactions to coming out as transgender

Amy Sequenzia:
Attitudes - Grading People  - The failures of functioning labels
Dear Google, Do No Harm - Google's partnership with Autism Speaks or why you should be worried about an ableist genocide
It Is About Respect - Ableism and the lack of basic respect
My Thoughts on ABA

Aspergers & the Alien (Amy Murphy):
The Morality Police: Honor Codes and the Tattle-Tale Aspie - The autistic compulsion to report rules violations: If you don't want to be tattled on, why not do nothing wrong?

Autism Information Library:
And People Still Fail to Get It, Again and Again - Accommodations and the entitled assholes who deny them
Autism, Speech, and Assistive Technology - An AAC device is part of a person's body, just like a prosthetic limb or wheelchair.
Autism? What is it...? - Basic myths and truths. The language is a bit outdated (this was written in 1997) but the information is still relevant.
Autistic Adults and Adolescents - They exist, and they're not like children.
Everything I Needed to Know about Life I Learned from my Behavioral Therapist - Life lessons internalized by the age of 5
I Dont Want To Be A Pioneer I Just Want To Be Me - The normalization of neurotypical
The Meaning of Self-Advocacy - It's not limited to speaking and writing.

The Autism Wars (Kerima Çevik):
Waiting For Allies Against Ableism

Autistic Aloha:
I am Openly Autistic! I am NOT ashamed to be Autistic! - Reasons to come out of the closet
Socializing as an Autistic: The Burden of Second Guessing - Anxiety and perseveration

AutisticChick (Kitt McKenzie):
A friend of mine. - Disability is an identity, inseparable from the disabled person.

Autistic Hoya (Lydia Brown):
Gendervague: At the Intersection of Autistic and Trans Experiences - On double-abuse of transgender autistic children, and the trans community's rejection of neurodiversity
The Problems with "Asperger's" - The false dichotomy between "Asperger's" and "autism but not Asperger's"

Unalterable: On Accepting Myself As A Queer Person With Dwarfism - The social model, intersectionality, and coming out

The Belle Jar (Anne Thériault):
Vaccines Don’t Cause Autism, But That’s Not The Point. Stop Being Ableist. - How the "vaccines don't cause autism" argument devalues autistic lives

A Call For Accountability - Hyperbolic rhetoric is harmful and lazy, and it's not the job of the people you're harming to find a way to avoid harm while still being lazy.

Emma's Hope Book:
____Ariane Zurcher era____
An Argument Against Pathologizing Autism – What Others Had to Say - The failures of the medical model of disability
The Depiction of Autism and Why it Matters - How ableist stereotypes affect perceptions and expectations
How I Made a Mistake and Was Given The Opportunity to Say I’m Sorry - Making amends, a parent's atonement to her child
The Signs of Neurotypical Spectrum Disorder – A Parody
____Emma Zurcher-Long era____
Emma Discusses Functioning Labels - More failures of functioning labels

Feminist Aspie (Not to be confused with Feminaspie):
I’m Not Sick: A rant about neurotypical privilege
Make Me Scream Your Screams: Why "auties can’t lie" couldn’t be further from the truth - It's true that we rarely lie, and yet people assume the opposite.

Fighting for Hope (David Davison):
Imagine - A poem about needs and the ableist rejection of them

iamthethunder (R. Larkin Taylor-Parker):
Autistic Culture: I Love it Sincerely, Irrevocably

Ally is a job, not a title.
#WalkinIssysShoes - How "quiet hands" traumatizes autistic people

Judy Endow (published on Ollibean):
Autism and Psychiatric Diagnoses - "It is unnecessary and dangerous to label and to treat the autistic way of being as if it were a psychiatric symptom." (emphasis mine)
Communication Supports For Speaking Autistics
Don’t Define Me By My Deficits - Rejecting the contrived negativity that reinforces cure culture

Just Stimming (Julia Bascom):
Dangerous Assumptions - Where "presume competence" meets "respect the dignity, humanity, and inherent value of the truly incompetent"

Letters From Aspergia:
On labels - Why labels are useful and important (just not functioning labels)

Love Explosions (Beth Ryan):
"caregiver burnout" - Practical advice for parenting autistic children
trust: i can’t -"I can't" doesn't mean I'm lazy, or manipulative, or I just don't want to. "I can't" means I can't.

Musings of an Aspie (Cynthia Kim):
Behavior is Communication: Are You Listening? - The false conflation of speech and communication.
Decoding the High Functioning Label - Even more failures of functioning labels
How Asperger’s Taught Me to Hate the Phone - What makes a phone call a huge demand
Invisible - Feelings of powerlessness, and apathy from the rest of the world
It's Not Your Fault - When NTs take autistic behavior as a personal insult
The Logical Fallacy of Person First Language - More failures of "person"-first language
Lost In Space - Pressure stims and sitting still
The Myth of Passing - Passing can mean safety, but it doesn't actually come with abled benefits.
A Cognitive Defense of Stimming (or Why “Quiet Hands” Makes Math Harder) - How preventing stims does the exact opposite of improving concentration
Silence 1: Frustration - Situational mutism
Socially Inappropriate - More on ableists against stimming
Unreasonable Goals - Dissecting the dangerous goals common in IEPs
What Do I Want? - The annoying instinct of prioritizing others
What Is Neurotypical? - A clarification for those reading autism books and asking "different from what?"
What's Your Function? - The many benefits of routines

Neurocosmopolitanism (Nick Walker):
April, Autism, and Allies - If someone condemns an organization related to their marginalized identity, you must drop your support for that organization immediately and without question. Otherwise you have failed tremendously at being an ally.
Neurodiversity: Some Basic Terms & Definitions - Clarification of some basic terms
Neurotypical Psychotherapists and Neurodivergent Clients - How to compensate for the power dynamics in a doctor/patient relationship
Things I Wish I’d Known in Kindergarten - Presuming competence in children by explaining institutionalized oppression

No Stereotypes Here (Corina Lynn Becker):
Functioning labels and meaning - But wait there's more failures of functioning labels

The Oatmeal (Matthew Inman):
Why Nikola Tesla was the greatest geek who ever lived

Outrunning the Storm:
My autism acceptance in practice - Tips for preventing meltdowns by practicing acceptance

Paula Durbin-Westby:
Why We Need Autism Acceptance - Appropriation of "autism acceptance" by those who don't really accept autism

Rachel Edidin:
I See Your Value Now - Interpreting sociology through fiction and metaphors

Radical Neurodivergence Speaking (Kassiane Sibley):
Indistinguishable From Peers - More failures of ABA therapy
You, yes you, need Autistic friends - An importance step that most parents forget to take after learning that their children are autistic

S.R. Salas:
Autistic Experience Defined… Neurotypically??? - Define the "normalcy" of autistic people based on autistic people, because why wouldn't you?
Awareness v. Acceptance: Does It Matter? - Parenting Autistic Children with Love and Acceptance, and what acceptance means to them
Disability as an Identity - A personal journey from rejection of the disabled label all the way to disabled pride
"You're Not Even Trying!" - Failing to acknowledge inner effort

Shaping Clay (Mike Scott):
Person-first language doesn't put people first, it makes them invisible - The failures of "person"-first language

Sonnolenta (Cristiana Giulia Calderan Bell):
Why I must be public about being Autistic. [Day 7: Neuro-friendly Life] - More reasons to come out of the closet

Square 8 (Bev Harp):
The ever-expanding list of neurotypical privilege
Scripted Language and Authenticity - People applying neurotypical expectations to autistic people and concluding the exact opposite of the truth

That Crazy Crippled Chick (Cara Liebowitz):
A Musing on the Word "Disabled" - The negative language of disability makes it all the more important to keep the social model in mind.
Able passing privilege. Yes, it's a thing. - Intersectionality means acknowledging the privileges you have in some areas even if you are oppressed in others.
Am I Fucking Crippled Enough For You Now? - Being forced to prove that you're disabled enough to call yourself disabled
Don't Sanitize My Disability Justice - Wheelchair ramps and handicapped parking spaces are nice, but they don't cure the ableism that murders people.
No, I Won't Stop Calling Myself a Cripple (And Here's Why) - Language reclamation and refusing to reject your identity
On Being A Cripple - More on language reclamation
The Power of Choices - While there is still plenty of intentional discrimination, the disabled community must also fight for the right to make choices.
R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Find Out What It Means to Me - Being told that respect is more important than your civil rights, and other forms of disrespect
This Is What Disability Binarism Looks Like - Accusing people of faking their impairments when they defy the expectations of a nonexistent binary
Three strikes, yerrrrrrrr out!!! - Intersectionality: Receiving two types of discrimination as a disabled woman (for me it's disabled atheist, with a minor third of rejecting gender roles.)
Visible vs. Invisible - Dissecting the "invisible disability" label
Walking Is Overrated: Learn to Love the Wheelchair - When normative, ableist expectations get in the way of support
What I Want You to Be Aware of on CP Awareness Day - Cara Liebowitz is not autistic but has cerebral palsy.
Why the abuse of disabled students needs to stop (and it needs to stop RIGHT. NOW.) - Spoiler: It's because of basic human decency.

Thoughts of an Introverted Matriarch:
Autistic Inertia - When using too much energy just to decide what to do
Autistic Overwhelm Prevention - Overtaxing one's brain and shutting down
Helpful Guide to Understanding Meltdowns
How I Experience Empathy - "Not responding does not equate not caring."
I Wish The World Had a Pause Button
Lessons I Have Learned As An Autism Advocate - Battles in the American education system
Things you wish adults knew when you were a child - Direct quotes from autistic adults
Use Your Words - Ableist expectations and exclusion

Unstrange Mind:
ABA - Even more failures of ABA therapy
Labels are for Soup Cans? - More benefits of labels
Your Children Are Listening - Why parents need to be careful with attitudes and rhetoric

Wij zijn Speciaal:
Understanding Neurotypicals - An intentionally offensive description of neurotypical disorder, mirroring the many ableist descriptions of autism

Yes, That Too (Alyssa Hillary):
Refusing to Pay - When success means you're labeled as an exception
Inclusive Pedagogy/Disability Statements - Proposed improvements for disability services in academia

Amythest Schaber - "Ask An Autistic" series
Tucker Bryant - "Oreo" - What I think when you call me "high-functioning"

1 comment:

  1. I learned late in life (I'm 67) that I have Asperger's. I blog about it at medium.com/an-aspie-comes-out-of-the-closet.


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