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Encyclopedia > People speculated to have been autistic

A number of famous people have been speculated by reputable sources to have had autistic disorder or Asperger syndrome. This speculation is done by journalists, academics and autism professionals. Such speculation is controversial and little of it is undisputed. Asperger syndrome (also referred to as Aspergers syndrome, Aspergers disorder, Aspergers, or AS) is one of five neurobiological pervasive developmental disorders (PDD), and is characterized by deficiencies in social and communication skills, normal to above normal intelligence,[1] and standard language development. ... Journalism is a discipline of gathering, writing and reporting news, and more broadly it includes the process of editing and presenting the news articles. ... Autism is a brain development disorder characterized by impairments in social interaction and communication, and restricted and repetitive behavior, all exhibited before a child is three years old. ... For the Wikipedia policy regarding controversial issues in articles, see Wikipedia:Guidelines for controversial articles. ...

Contents

Historical figures who displayed behavioral patterns associated with the autistic spectrum

Note: This is a list reporting speculative claims. It includes people who died before the work done by Hans Asperger and Leo Kanner in classifying autism spectrum conditions. It is based on reported behaviors rather than any clinical observation of the individual that may or may not have been accurate. Hans Asperger, who discovered Asperger syndrome, described his patients as little professors. Hans Asperger (b. ... Dr Leo Kanner MD Leo Kanner (June 13, 1894 - April 4, 1981) was an Austrian-American physician known for his work related to autism. ...

See also [[1]] Hans Christian Andersen or simply H.C. Andersen , (April 2, 1805 – August 4, 1875) was a Danish author and poet, most famous for his fairy tales. ... Michael Louis Fitzgerald (17 August 1937-) is a Roman Catholic archbishop. ...



Béla Bartók, 20th Century Hungarian composer. Speculated by Tony Attwood at a conference in New York in October 1999[2], and by Ioan James.[3] Béla Bartók in 1927 Béla Viktor János Bartók (March 25, 1881 – September 26, 1945) was a Hungarian composer, pianist and collector of Eastern European and Middle Eastern folk music. ... Tony Attwood (born 1952 in Birmingham, United Kingdom) is the author of several books on Aspergers Syndrome. ... “NY” redirects here. ... This article is about the year. ... Ioan Mackenzie James (born May 23, 1928) is a British mathematician working in the field of topology particularly in homotopy theory. ...

(17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... This article is about the country. ... Uta Frith is a leading developmental psychologist working at the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London. ... Photograph of Lewis Carroll taken by himself, with assistance Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (January 27, 1832 – January 14, 1898), better known by the pen name Lewis Carroll, was a British author, mathematician, Anglican clergyman, logician, and amateur photographer. ... For other persons named Henry Cavendish, see Henry Cavendish (disambiguation). ... (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Carl XII, Karl XII or Carolus Rex, (June 17, 1682 – November 30, 1718), the Alexander of the North, nicknamed in Turkish as DemirbaÅŸ Åžarl (Charles the Habitué), was King of Sweden from 1697 until his death in 1718. ... For other people of the same surname, and places and things named after Charles Darwin, see Darwin. ... This article is about evolution in biology. ... Darwins illustrations of beak variation in the finches of the Galápagos Islands, which hold 13 closely related species that differ most markedly in the shape of their beaks. ... Éamon de Valera (born with the name Edward George de Valera, IPA: [1][2]) (14 October 1882 – 29 August 1975) was one of the dominant political figures in 20th century Ireland. ... “Einstein” redirects here. ... Glenn Gould rehearsing in 1974. ... “Bach” redirects here. ... Thomas Jefferson (13 April 1743 N.S.–4 July 1826) was the third President of the United States (1801–09), the principal author of the Declaration of Independence (1776), and one of the most influential Founding Fathers for his promotion of the ideals of Republicanism in the United States. ... Norm Ledgin is an American writer and journalist, living in Oxford Township, Kansas. ... Keith Sinjohn Joseph, Baron Joseph, Bt, CH , PC (17 January 1918–10 December 1994) was a British barrister, politician, and Conservative Cabinet Minister under three different Ministries. ... Margaret Thatcher Thatcherism is the system of political thought attributed to the governments of Margaret Thatcher, British Prime Minister from 1979 to 1990. ... James Augustine Aloysius Joyce (Irish Séamus Seoighe; 2 February 1882 – 13 January 1941) was an Irish expatriate writer, widely considered to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. ... Ulysses is a novel by James Joyce, first serialized in parts in the American journal The Little Review from March 1918 to December 1920, and then published in its entirety by Sylvia Beach on February 2, 1922, in Paris. ... For other uses, see Michelangelo (disambiguation). ... The Italian Renaissance began the opening phase of the Renaissance, a period of great cultural change and achievement in Europe that spanned the period from the end of the 14th century to about 1600, marking the transition between Medieval and Early Modern Europe. ... Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (January 27, 1756 – December 5, 1791) was one of the most significant and influential of all composers of Western classical music. ... Sir Isaac Newton FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist. ... Murray Irwin Norman or Moe Norman (July 10, 1929 – September 4, 2004) was a Canadian professional golfer. ... This article is about the sport. ... Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 [1] [2] – 21 January 1950), better known by the pen name George Orwell, was an English author and journalist. ... Simon Heffers biography of Enoch Powell, published in 1999 John Enoch Powell, MBE (June 16, 1912 – February 8, 1998) was a British politician, linguist, writer, academic, soldier and poet. ... Ramanujan Srinivasa Aiyangar Ramanujan (Tamil: ஸ்ரீனிவாஸ ஐயங்கார் ராமானுஜன்) (December 22, 1887 – April 26, 1920) was a groundbreaking Indian mathematician. ... Selfportrait of Erik Satie. ... Jonathan Swift Jonathan Swift (November 30, 1667 – October 19, 1745) was an Irish cleric, satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer (first for Whigs then for Tories), and poet, famous for works like Gullivers Travels, A Modest Proposal, A Journal to Stella, The Drapiers Letters, The Battle of the Books, and... Nikola Tesla (1856-1943)[1] was a world-renowned Serbian inventor, physicist, mechanical engineer and electrical engineer. ... Alan Mathison Turing, OBE, FRS (23 June 1912 – 7 June 1954) was an English mathematician, logician, and cryptographer. ... Tony Attwood (born 1952 in Birmingham, United Kingdom) is the author of several books on Aspergers Syndrome. ... [[1]] Michael George Francis Ventris (July 12, 1922–September 6, 1956) was an English architect and classical scholar, who along with John Chadwick was responsible for the decipherment of Linear B. Michael Ventris was educated in Switzerland and at Stowe School, housed in a magnificent 18th century country house. ... An architect at his drawing board, 1893 An architect is a person who is involved in the planning, designing and oversight of a buildings construction. ... This article is about the ancient syllabary. ... Simon Baron-Cohen is a British professor of developmental psychopathology in the departments of psychiatry and experimental psychology at the University of Cambridge, a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, and director of the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge, in the United Kingdom. ... Andrew Warhola (August 6, 1928 — February 22, 1987), better known as Andy Warhol, was an American artist who became a central figure in the movement known as Pop art. ... It has been suggested that this article be split into multiple articles accessible from a disambiguation page. ... Thomas Blind Tom Wiggins (May 25, 1849 - June 13, 1908) was an African American autistic savant and musical prodigy. ... Oliver Sacks in 2005. ... Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein (IPA: ) (April 26, 1889 in Vienna, Austria – April 29, 1951 in Cambridge, England) was an Austrian philosopher who contributed several ground-breaking ideas to philosophy, primarily in the foundations of logic, the philosophy of mathematics, the philosophy of language, and the philosophy of mind. ... William Butler Yeats, 1933 photograph, author unknown. ...

Einstein and Newton

It has been speculated that Isaac Newton had what is now considered Asperger syndrome.
It has been speculated that Isaac Newton had what is now considered Asperger syndrome.

Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton may have had Asperger's syndrome, but a definitive diagnosis is currently impossible as both scientists died before this condition came to be known. Albert Einstein's brain has been preserved. As physical features of the brain connected with autism become better known it may become possible to tell whether Einstein has those features. Godfrey Knellers portrait of Isaac Newton (1689) oil on canvas. ... Godfrey Knellers portrait of Isaac Newton (1689) oil on canvas. ... Sir Isaac Newton FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist. ... Asperger syndrome (also referred to as Aspergers syndrome, Aspergers disorder, Aspergers, or AS) is one of five neurobiological pervasive developmental disorders (PDD), and is characterized by deficiencies in social and communication skills, normal to above normal intelligence,[1] and standard language development. ... “Einstein” redirects here. ... Sir Isaac Newton FRS (4 January 1643 – 31 March 1727) [ OS: 25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727][1] was an English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, natural philosopher, and alchemist. ... Asperger described his patients as little professors. Aspergers syndrome (AS, or the more common shorthand Aspergers), is characterized as one of the five pervasive developmental disorders, and is commonly referred to as a form of high functioning autism. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ...


The case that Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton were autistic

Ioan James,[8] Simon Baron-Cohen[21] and Michael Fitzgerald[12] believe that Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton had personalities consistent with Asperger's syndrome; Tony Attwood has also named Einstein as a likely case of mild autism.[13][2] This tends to involve difficulties with social skills and preoccupation with complex subjects like music, which Einstein had. Fitzgerald claims we should accept and tolerate eccentrics as they frequently have positive contributions to make. Ioan Mackenzie James (born May 23, 1928) is a British mathematician working in the field of topology particularly in homotopy theory. ... Simon Baron-Cohen is a British professor of developmental psychopathology in the departments of psychiatry and experimental psychology at the University of Cambridge, a Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge, and director of the Autism Research Centre at the University of Cambridge, in the United Kingdom. ... Michael Louis Fitzgerald (17 August 1937-) is a Roman Catholic archbishop. ... Social skills allow a person to interact and communicate in nature with others. ... In popular usage, eccentricity refers to unusual or odd behavior on the part of an individual. ...


Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton both experienced intense intellectual interests in specific limited areas. Both scientists had trouble reacting appropriately in social situations and had difficulty communicating. Both scientists sometimes became so involved with their work that they did not eat. Newton spoke little and was frequently lukewarm or bad-tempered with the few friends he had. If no one attended his lecture he still lectured to an empty room. [5] When he was 50, Newton suffered a nervous breakdown involving depression and paranoia. Clinical depression (also called major depressive disorder, or unipolar depression when compared to bipolar disorder) is a state of intense sadness, melancholia or despair that has advanced to the point of being disruptive to an individuals social functioning and/or activities of daily living. ... For other senses of this word, see paranoia (disambiguation). ...

It has been speculated that Albert Einstein was on what is now considered the autistic spectrum.
It has been speculated that Albert Einstein was on what is now considered the autistic spectrum.

Einstein's career was devoted to complex mathematics. In the article "Autism, Genius, and Greatness" on the Autistic Advocacy website, Frank Klein claims “(Einstein’s) autistic traits, and his near-certain place on the autistic spectrum, are well-known in the autistic community” [6]. Klein believes Einstein was typical of capable autistic people as he was logical and analytical though socially awkward and needed daily solitude, and that, being extremely "perseverative", he could give more time to a problem of interest than any normal person could have. Klein suggests that autistic people "have an affinity for objects (tangible or otherwise) rather than people," and that the object of Einstein’s attention was physics. Klein feels further it is good that Einstein had not been subject to misguided therapy or intervention. Such intervention Klein feels, could have hindered him in developing his unique abilities in mathematics and physics. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1135x1493, 127 KB) from [1] Library of Congress description is: EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Photograph by Oren Jack Turner, Princeton, N.J. Copyrighted 1947. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1135x1493, 127 KB) from [1] Library of Congress description is: EINSTEIN, ALBERT. Photograph by Oren Jack Turner, Princeton, N.J. Copyrighted 1947. ... “Einstein” redirects here. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... This is a discussion of a present category of science. ...


In a paper titled An Inside View of Autism, Temple Grandin said, "I had the opportunity to visit some of Einstein's relatives. His family history has a high incidence of autism, dyslexia, food allergies, giftedness, and musical talent. Einstein himself had many autistic traits" [7].


People claim that Albert Einstein was a loner as a child, was a late speaker, starting only at 2-3 years old, and repeated sentences obsessively up to the age of seven. As an adult his lectures were confusing. He needed his wives to act as parents when he was an adult; factors people claim make him "obviously" (or at least stereotypically) autistic. He was also the stereotypical "absent-minded professor"; he was often forgetful of everyday items, such as keys, and would focus so intently on solving physics problems that he would often become oblivious to his surroundings. In his later years, his appearance inadvertently created (or reflected) another stereotype of scientists in the process: the researcher with unruly white hair. When Albert Einstein's brain was removed at autopsy and studied, researchers found that his Sylvian fissure was truncated. Abnormalities of the Sylvian fissure may be associated with autism and speech problems. [8]. The absent-minded professor is a stock character of popular fiction usually portrayed as an academic with important information, but whose focus on their learning leads them to ignore their surroundings. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Lateral sulcus The lateral sulcus (also called Sylvian fissure or lateral fissure) is one of the most prominent structures of the human brain. ...


Finally, in the words of Albert Einstein: [9]

"My passionate sense of social justice and social responsibility has always contrasted oddly with my pronounced lack of need for direct contact with other human beings and human communities. I am truly a lone traveler and have never belonged to my country, my home, my friends, or even my immediate family, with my whole heart; in the face of all these ties, I have never lost a sense of distance and a need for solitude..."

The case that Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton were not autistic

Dr. Glen Elliott, a psychiatrist at the University of California at San Francisco, is unconvinced that either scientist had Asperger's Syndrome. "One can imagine geniuses who are socially inept and yet not remotely autistic."[21] "Impatience with the intellectual slowness of others, narcissism and passion for one's mission in life might combine to make such an individuals isolative and difficult." Elliott added that Einstein had a good sense of humor, a trait that is virtually unknown in people with severe Asperger Syndrome. The University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) is a public university located in San Francisco, California. ... This article is about narcissism as a word in common use. ... Look up Humour in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


In contrast, Wrong Planet states that those with Asperger’s Syndrome frequently are unusually gifted in humor, especially in doggerel, puns, satire and wordplay [citation needed]. Viktoria Lyons and Michael Fitzgerald of the Department of Child Psychiatry at Trinity College, Dublin state that the prevailing "research has shown that individuals with autism and Asperger Syndrome are impaired in humor appreciation, although anecdotal and parental reports provide some evidence to the contrary."[10] They describe several individuals with Asperger’s Syndrome who display a sense of humor and further suggest that a minority of such individuals, especially those that are mathematically gifted, can possess a sense of humor that is superior than average due to their unusual personalities, experience and intelligence.   Wrong Planet (sometimes referred to by its URL, WrongPlanet. ... Doggerel describes verse considered of little literary value. ... For other uses, see Pun (disambiguation). ... 1867 edition of the satirical magazine Punch, a British satirical magazine, ground-breaking on popular literature satire. ... Word play is a literary technique in which the nature of the words used themselves become part of the subject of the work. ... Trinity College, Dublin TCD, corporately designated as the Provost, Fellows and Scholars of the College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity of Queen Elizabeth near Dublin, was founded in 1592 by Elizabeth I, and is the only constituent college of the University of Dublin, Irelands oldest university. ...


Controversy

This speculation is controversial. Some people claim these people only represent very mild cases. Some alleged famous autistics may only have a few autistic traits - not enough for a diagnosis. It has been claimed that it is simply not possible to diagnose the dead, so nothing can be said about speculation of historical figures.


People who believe the assertions have responded to the criticism, saying there was no knowledge of autism at the time these people were alive, so the fact that autistic people were undiagnosed does not mean they were not autistic; it simply means their autism was not known.


See also

This is a list of noteworthy people known to have a condition on the autistic spectrum. ... This is a list of autism-related topics. ... Fictional characters described by the authors as having conditions on the autistic spectrum. ...

External links

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Fitzgerald, Michael (2005). The genesis of artistic creativity: Asperger's syndrome and the arts. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. ISBN 1843103346. 
  2. ^ a b c Asperger's Syndrome Specialist, Dr. Tony Attwood in NY. Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Ioan James (2006). Asperger's Syndrome and High Achievement: Some Very Remarkable People. London: Jessica Kingsley Publishers. ISBN 1843103885. 
  4. ^ Nigel Hawkes (2001). Why a Dash Of Autism May Be Key To Success. Times Newspapers, Ltd.. Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  5. ^ Erica Goode (October 9, 2001). CASES; A Disorder Far Beyond Eccentricity.
  6. ^ Interview with Oliver Sacks (1999). Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  7. ^ Sacks O (2001 Oct 9). "Henry Cavendish: an early case of Asperger's syndrome?". Neurology 57 (7): 1347. PMID 11591871. 
  8. ^ a b James I (Jan. 2003 Mar). "Singular scientists". Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine 96 (1): 36-9. PMID 12519805. 
  9. ^ Gillberg C (Nov. 2002). "Charles XII seems to have fulfilled all the criteria of Asperger syndrome". Lakartidningen 99 (48): 4837-8. PMID 12523067. 
  10. ^ Lagerkvist B (Nov. 2002). "Charles XII had all symptoms of Asperger syndrome: stubbornness, a stereotyped existence and lack of compassion". Lakartidningen 99 (48): 4874-8. PMID 12523074. 
  11. ^ Brilliant minds linked to autism. BBC News (2004).
  12. ^ a b c d e f Jeremy Laurance (Jul 12, 2006). Keith Joseph, the father of Thatcherism, 'was autistic'. The Independent (London). Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  13. ^ a b c d e f Tony Attwood. Strategies for Improving the Social Integration of Children with Asperger's Syndrome. Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  14. ^ The Variations of Glenn Gould; A Look at the Life and Career of a Brilliant Pianist. National Public Radio (Sept. 21, 2002). Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  15. ^ Arshad M, Fitzgerald M (2004 May). "Did Michelangelo (1475-1564) have high-functioning autism?". Journal of Medical Biography 12 (2): 115-20. PMID 15079170. 
  16. ^ Bruce Selcraig (2004-09-28). Golf's purest striker rarely missed a fairway. USA Today. Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  17. ^ Fitzgerald M (Aug. 2002). "Did Ramanujan have Asperger's disorder or Asperger's syndrome?". Journal of Medical Biography 10 (3): 167-9. PMID 12114951. 
  18. ^ William Zick. Thomas "Blind Tom" Wiggins (1849-1908), African American Pianist and Composer; A Blind And Autistic Slave Was A Musical Genius. AfriClassical.com. Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  19. ^ Fitzgerald M (Mar. 2000). "Did Ludwig Wittgenstein have Asperger's syndrome?". European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 9 (1): 61-5. PMID 10795857. 
  20. ^ Fitzgerald M (Dec. 2000). "Ludwig Wittgenstein: autism and philosophy". Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 30 (6): 621-2. PMID 11261476. 
  21. ^ a b Hazel Muir (April 30, 2003). Einstein and Newton showed signs of autism. New Scientist. Retrieved on 2007-09-09.
  • Articles reporting Baron-Cohen and James' suggestion that Einstein and Newton showed autistic traits:
  • Other references:
    • Cortical Sulcal Maps in Autism

  Results from FactBites:
 
People speculated to have been autistic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2172 words)
This speculation is done by some autistic people, parents of autistic children, webmasters, journalists, and autism professionals.
Klein suggests that autistic people "have an affinity for objects (tangible or otherwise) rather than people," and that the object of Einstein’s attention was physics.
People who believe the assertions have responded to the criticism, saying there was no knowledge of autism at the time these people were alive, so the fact that autistic people were undiagnosed does not mean they were not autistic; it simply means their autism was not known.
Asperger syndrome - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (6291 words)
People with Asperger syndrome lack the natural ability to see the subtexts of social interaction (sometimes resulting in well-meaning remarks that may offend and so on, finding it hard to know what is "acceptable") and also tend to lack the ability to broadcast their own emotional state.
People with Asperger syndrome often are noted for having a highly pedantic way of speaking, using language far more formal and structured than the situation normally would be thought to call for.
The speculated social contributions of autistic people have contributed to the shift in the perception of autism spectrum disorders as complex syndromes rather than diseases that must be cured.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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