I know some people with AS like this book, but it still does the dyscalculic
branch of the family a disservice.
What I do not like about the book is the fact that it is another example of
exploitation in the fact that a novelist with no direct experience of AS is
making money from our experience whereas most of us would find the
experience of trying to be published indeed of exploiting our own creativity
difficult because of the social nature of such negotiations.
I know that from experience as it happens and have been sadly exploited
Whilst books like this may raise awareness of AS they are still biased
interpreters of our indegenous culture and stand in relation to us as does
Hollywood to the native americans in my opinion.
Oh well the world is going to have to wait for my world view, and it will
not be in novel form but as self published video.
There are in fact in spite of the difficulties a larger number of autistic
authors than the popular world imagines and this site is worth a visit
There are even more of us who have written webpages about our experiences,
though these too in the past have been data mined by pyscologists and
academics looking for easy material to exploit.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: The Disability-Research Discussion List
> [mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of Kathy Saunders
> Sent: 16 March 2004 19:27
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
> "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" is by Mark Haddon, a
> children's book writer, and is published in UK by Jonathan Cape.
> The story is fiction, but is told in the voice of Christopher, aged 15 who
> has Aspergers syndrome. This explains his point of view as being entirely
> and supremely logical as to facts, but rather less understanding
> of personal
> relationships. For example, the chapters are numbered in rising prime
> numbers. Christopher finds a dog stabbed to death on a
> neighbour's lawn, and
> decides to investigate who the killer might be.
> The passage which Raffaello Belli refers to is on page 33 of the
> UK edition.
> Christopher is telling his educational psychologist that he wants to be an
> astronaut, but even though he is considered to be very clever, he knows
> becoming an astronaut will be difficult because he couldn't take
> orders from
> other people, and has less than 20/20 vision. He goes on - "But I said you
> could still want something that is very unlikely to happen." Then he
> describes a conversation with another boy at school -
> "Terry, who is the older brother of Francis, who is at the school, said I
> would only ever get a job collecting supermarket trollies or cleaning our
> donkey shit at an animal sanctuary and they didn't let spazzers drive
> rockets that cost billions of pounds. When I told this to my
> Father, he said
> that Terry was jealous of my being cleverer than him. Which was a stupid
> thing to think because because we weren't in a competition. But Terry is
> stupid, so quod erat demonstrandum which is Latin for Which is the thing
> that was going to be proved, which means Thus it is proved.
> I'm not a spazzer, which means spastic, not like Francis, who is
> a spazzer,
> and even though I probably won't become an astronaut I am going to
> university and study Mathematics....." (and later in that same
> paragraph) "
> But Terry won't go to University. Father says Terry is most
> likely to end up
> in prison."
> Thus, the UK version does not suggest spastic *is* retarded. Only
> Terry who
> is clearly shown to be socially ignorant, calls Christopher "a spazzer".
> This derogative term is currently widely used slang, or street
> language, to
> describe any personal clumsiness - it is not neccessarily used only for
> people who have cerebral palsy, learning difficulties or any
> other condition
> that makes them different.
> The translation thus mistakes the colloquial 'spazzer' with the specific
> term, and also mistranslates the the specific term 'spastic' with
> and perhaps indicates the translator confuses the two terms.
> This would be a difficult book to translate, since many of the points that
> Christopher makes cause readers to think again about the literal
> meanings of
> words and logic. I found it a stimulating read, which reminded me of
> conversations I have had with a young friend who does have
> Aspergers, and to
> that end it does help to reveal some of the frustrations and
> misunderstandings between those with and without Aspergers. However, the
> author has said it was not a book about a boy with Aspergers, more a book
> about a young mathematician who happens to be different, and
> although a few
> have said it reinforces the 'Rainman' stereotype, it has been widely
> commended by many people who have Aspergers in the UK.
> Kathy Saunders
> Consultant for Disability Awareness in Children's Books
> [log in to unmask]
> Happy Ever Afters - a storybook guide to teaching children about
> Trentham ISBN 1 85856 213 9
> Disability Culture in Children's Literature edition of Disability Studies
> Quarterly is now online at www.dsq-sds.org under "current issue" link.
> Disability Studies Quarterly: Winter 2004 (February) Volume 24 No. 1
> ISSN 1041-5718
> > Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 11:36:45 +0000
> > From: Raffaello Belli <[log in to unmask]>
> > Subject: "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time"
> > I am said in UK a best-seller book is:
> > "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time"
> > Here in Italia, in the Italian translation of the book, it is written:
> > page 35 "Io non sono un ritardato, che vuol dire
> > spastico, ................. "
> > that is, in English, approximately:
> > "I am not a retarded person, who means spastic, ...."
> > Anybody knows the original phrase in English?
> > And, if this is the concept, I think it is a shame to write
> that "spastic
> > means retarded".
> > Moreover in a 2003 best seller!
> > Raffaello Belli
> > ------------------------------
> > Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 07:54:54 -0500
> > From: Maria Barile <[log in to unmask]>
> > Subject: Re: "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time"
> > Rafallo.
> > I don't see the same meaning in the English and Italian translation.
> > However, from living in a part of Canada where things get
> translated all
> > the time. I do know, that sometime the title of books in one language
> > no direct link to original tittle. A translation Prof., at McGill
> > to me that its done that way to make the title make to the
> audience, in
> > their language. take a look at these 2 phrases :
> > in bocca al lupo" became "break a leg" both have connotation of good
> > I can see however, that prase in Italian is offensive.
> Especially with
> > the historical connotation of the word "spastico" and as you
> cite it its
> > totally mis-translation. A big problem when the language of disability
> > mixed or double mixed with other preconceived ideas. ps. who is the
> > author?
> > Maria
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