Imagining the Ecologies of Autism

Authored by: Melissa Trimingham , Nicola Shaughnessy

The Routledge Companion to Theatre, Performance, and Cognitive Science

Print publication date:  September  2018
Online publication date:  September  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138048898
eBook ISBN: 9781315169927
Adobe ISBN:


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Autism is a prevalent theme in both literary and cognitive studies. There are numerous fictional narratives of the condition, many of which are written by non-autistic authors as well as autobiographical accounts of the experience, poetry by autistic writers, television, film and theatre representations (Grandin 1995; Hacking 2010; Semino 2014). The condition is also discussed in connection with key topics in cognitive science that include theory of mind, empathy, attention, intersubjectivity and emotion. This chapter draws upon insights from cognitive neuroscience, performance theory and practice, as well as our personal and professional experience of living and working with autistic people in order to better understand the characteristics of the autistic imagination.

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