Bright Splinters of the Mind Beate Hermelin A Personal Story of Research with Autistic Savants

'Some autistic people have singular talents of various sorts, existing in strange isolation from the rest of their minds. While such 'savant' talents have been described, anecdotally, for a century or more, Beate Hermelin has been a pioneer in their scientific investigation. In Bright Splinters of the Mind, she brings together the results of her more than twenty years' research, and presents a highly original and systematic analysis of a range of autistic talents - artistic, musical, linguistic, mathematical - showing that while they might seem to be so odd and special, they provide essential clues to the nature of all intelligent thinking. This analysis is embedded in an engrossing narrative of Dr. Hermelin's own personal involvement and passion. Drawing on 20 years of research, Beate Hermelin describes not just what autistics savant do, but explains how they do it. During her studies she and her collaborators examined savants alongside neurotypical individuals talented in the same domain, as well as people with the same level of intelligence as the savants but with no special abilities. In her fascinating and highly informative book she describes the nature of the talents of savants who are gifted at poetry, foreign language acquisition, the visual arts, music, and calendar and numerical calculations. The work of a scholar, and immensely readable, Bright Splinters of the Mind is not only a thorough exploration of autistic gifts, it is also a book which reaches radical conclusions on the very nature of talent and its relationship to intelligence. Copy as new. // autisme /
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