As a part of our latest training and advocacy movement, we want to add more articles and readings onto our website about neurodiversity, disability theory and philosophy.
Thus, we start off with a basic introduction of neurodiversity!
The neurodiversity movement prefers to view individuals with autism and other cognitive or neurological impairments in a similar fashion – simply as people with normal human differences in behavior.
The goal of neurodiversity rights advocates is to expand our definition of what is viewed as typical and acceptable rather than altering or curing those behaviors.
Researchers of the Stanford Neurodiversity Project specifically define neurodiversity as a “concept that regards individuals with differences in brain function and behavioral traits as part of normal variation in the human population”.
The neurodiversity movement focuses on advocating for varied forms of communication and self-expression to promote inclusivity in society, while destigmatizing diagnosed conditions.
Through supporting and uncovering the strengths of neurodiverse individuals, it is possible to build innovation and productivity of society altogether.
The concept of neurodiversity is a cultural response to the psychiatric approach of labeling and categorizing mental health/neurodevelopmental conditions. Neurodiversity provides a language that allows people to explain their experiences more fluidly and dynamically.
There are multiple aspects of the movement that must be considered; many people act as performative allies by using the appropriate rhetoric and language such as “neurodivergent” and “neurotypical”. However, the entire movement is predicated on a shift of viewing disabilities from a different perspective, towards a model of inclusion, strengths, and abilities, rather than the dehumanization of weaknesses and children with natural differences.
We’ll be covering more in future articles, discussing the foundations of neurodiversity, varying models of disability, and the lines between advocacy and allyship! Stay tuned for more :)