The term neurodiversity was coined in the 1990s by journalist Harvey Blume and an autism advocate and sociologist diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, Judy Singer, with the goal of being able to suggest that people with atypical brain wiring be respected as anyone else as everyone can be placed on a range of spectrums.
Neurodiversity asserts that some features usually described as illnesses or disorders are in fact only atypical or neurodivergent in that they result from a specific neurological wiring. Therefore, it is merely an aberration that must be respected like any other variance such as sex, race, or any other human attribute. The concept of neurodiversity accounting for individual neurological differences creates a discourse whereby neurodiverse individuals may be seen in terms of their strengths in addition to their challenges. It is hoped that the concept of neurodiversity will help combat the strict discriminations of ableism and recognize people for their gifts to afford them the same rights and privileges as any other human being. Neurodiversity implies neurologically diverse or neuroatypical.
References and Readings
- Benton, A. L., Sivan, A. B., Hamsher, K. D., Varney, N. R., & Spreen, O. (1994). Contributions to neuropsychological assessment: A clinical manual. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Lezak, M. D., Howieson, D. B., Bigler, E. D., & Tranel, D. (2012). Neuropsychological assessment (5th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar