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The metamorphosis of autism

A history of child development in Britain

By Bonnie Evans

The metamorphosis of autism

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-9592-4
  • Pages: 512
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £25.00
  • Published Date: February 2017
  • BIC Category: History of Medicine, United Kingdom, Great Britain, HISTORY / Europe / Great Britain, History of medicine, Autism & Asperger’s Syndrome, Medicine / History of medicine, PSYCHOLOGY / Psychopathology / Autism Spectrum Disorders, MEDICAL / History, United Kingdom, Great Britain, Autism & Asperger's Syndrome
  • Series: Social Histories of Medicine

Description

This book is available as an open access ebook under a CC-BY-NC-ND licence.

What is autism and where has it come from? Increased diagnostic rates, the rise of the 'neurodiversity' movement, and growing autism journalism, have recently fuelled autism's fame and controversy. The metamorphosis of autism is the first book to explain our current fascination with autism by linking it to a longer history of childhood development. Drawing from a staggering array of primary sources, Bonnie Evans traces autism back to its origins in the early twentieth century and explains why the idea of autism has always been controversial and why it experienced a 'metamorphosis' in the 1960s and 1970s.

Evans takes the reader on a journey of discovery from the ill-managed wards of 'mental deficiency' hospitals, to high-powered debates in the houses of parliament, and beyond. The book will appeal to a wide market of scholars and others interested in autism.

Reviews

'Undoubtedly, this book will serve as a central text for those interested in the history of children, medicine, and psychology in twentieth century Britain. To all its readers, The Metamorphosis of Autism offers a masterclass in the creation of a cogent and stimulating historical analysis.'
MedHum Daily Dose July 2017, David Kilgannon

'This is a worthwhile resource for anyone looking at the evolution of the syndrome of autism spectrum disorder from the original use of the term autism within psychiatry.'
Peter Carpenter, May 2017, British Society for the History of Medicine

'Bonnie Evans's great history of autism in UK sets the bar high!'e was previously a Hardiman Scholar, a Kirkpatrick History of Medicine Finalist and a Wellcome Trust MA student. His research looks at the varied experiences of persons with intellectual disabilities in Ireland from 1947 to 1996.
Professor Jonathyne Briggs, History Department, Indiana University Northwest

'Read Bonnie Evans's excellent recent book'
Dr Carsten Timmerman, Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine, Manchester University, and Chair of the Executive Committee of the Society for the Social History of Medicine

'Great to see launch of Bonnie Evans's fabulous new book'
Professor Stuart Murray, Director of the Leeds Centre for Medical Humanities, Leeds University

Author

Bonnie Evans is Wellcome Trust Postdoctoral Fellow in the History Department at Queen Mary, University of London

Contents

Introduction: Perceiving, describing and modelling child development
Part I: The first autism: The observation and description of child development before 1959
1: The first autism
2: The first autism controversies
3: Inside the Maudsley Child Psychotic Clinic in the 1950s
Part II: How autism became autism
4: The transformation of social life and the transformation of autism in the 1960s
5: How do you measure a social impairment?
6: Epidemiology, epidemics and autism as a global health crisis
Conclusion
Index

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