Translating Autism Myths into Positive Futures

  • Matthew BennettEmail author
  • Amanda A. Webster
  • Emma Goodall
  • Susannah Rowland


Since Early Infantile Autism was first described by Leo Kanner in 1943, myths and misperceptions about the nature of what is now known as autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have proliferated. These myths have played a role in shaping autism research and clinical practice and have impacted the way in which autistic individuals are viewed by others in society. This book will explore popular myths, beliefs and misconceptions about ASD and autistic people. Each chapter explores a different myth and begins by investigating the origins of the myth. The current research and impacts related to each myth will be examined and the underlying themes relevant to the lives of autistic children and adults will be discussed. At the end of each chapter, the authors will discuss the ways in which the myth can be reconstructed, in the light of current knowledge and research, and will provide recommendations for current and future practice. This book will start by reconstructing myths that relate to the ways that autism has been viewed by society. Next, the myths that reflect the public’s perception of autistic individuals will be critiqued. Finally, this book will examine myths about the traits and abilities of autistic children and adults and will present an alternative view in which contexts are created and autistic individuals are presumed to be competent and capable of constructing their own futures.


Autism Misconceptions Myths Pseudoscience 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew Bennett
    • 1
    Email author
  • Amanda A. Webster
    • 2
  • Emma Goodall
    • 3
  • Susannah Rowland
    • 4
  1. 1.University of WollongongWollongongAustralia
  2. 2.University of WollongongWollongongAustralia
  3. 3.University of WollongongWollongongAustralia
  4. 4.University of WollongongWollongongAustralia

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