Neurodiversity is a concept where neurological differences are to be recognized and respected as any other human variation. These differences can include those labeled with Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Dyscalculia, Autistic Spectrum, Tourette Syndrome, and others.
For many autistic people, neurodiversity is viewed is a concept and social movement that advocates for viewing autism as a variation of human wiring, rather than a disease. As such, neurodiversity activists reject the idea that autism should be cured, advocating instead for celebrating autistic forms of communication and self-expression, and for promoting support systems that allow autistic people to live as autistic people.
Comments on: "What is Neurodiversity?" (4)
Love the concept, would love it if you used people first language! People with autism instead of autistic people is a great example of this.
Hi Deb! Thank you for your comment. We actually deliberately use “autistic” rather than person-first language here. Many people are not aware of it, but a very significant number of autistic people very strongly prefer “autistic” over “person with autism” (I know people who are offended by “person with autism”) because of the fact that they feel that using person-first language around autism makes it seem like their autism and personhood are somehow separate. This doesn’t mean that those of us who use “autistic” see ourselves as any less human, or any less diverse, as anyone else, but rather that our autism fundamentally influences (both in positive and negative ways) who we are–similar to other aspects of a person, such as race, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion/philosophy, and so on. But even those of us who do not like being called “people with autism” generally respect the preferences of those who do (and do use person-first language in regard to disabilities where most people want to be referred to as “people first,” such as when referring to individuals who have intellectual disabilities). The issue is actually pretty controversial – if you’re interested in reading more about the pro-“autistic people” perspective, here are some good resources on the topic:
I hope this helps!
[…] What is Neurodiversity? [Website]. (2011). National Symposium on Neurodiversity at Syracuse University. Available: https://neurodiversitysymposium.wordpress.com/what-is-neurodiversity/ […]
[…] of self, my understanding was broadened and allowed me to not feel so dysfunctional but rather neuro-diverse. There are so many aspects of this subject which are important and in my opinion should be studied […]