Portrayals of non-neurotypical people have been growing more popular in the fiction of recent years. Mark Haddon's The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, for instance, featuring an autistic teenage boy, is currently rehearsing a stage adaptation for Britain's National Theatre, and is in development for a film as well. (A woman of our acquaintance, for instance, with an adult autistic son herself, found Haddon's book so angering she threw it away unfinished.) Francisco Stork's Marcelo in the Real World, drew praise for its beautiful writing and sensitive handling of the theme; but also drew criticism that the "autism-like disorder" of its protagonist appropriated and misrepresented an actual condition. Some people feel such works promote equality by raising the profile of non-neurotypical people in mainstream society; on the other hand, some people feel such works are exploitative and, if not created by someone with personal experience, misrepresentative.
What are your views on this controversy? Can you recommend particularly good (or bad) portraits of non-neurotypical people in modern media?
The Board Administration Team
(hapax, Kit Whitfield and mmy)