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Book on Autism Wins Samuel Johnson Prize 2015, First in 17 Year History

Update Date: Nov 03, 2015 09:04 AM EST
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A book that unravels the controversial history and delves into the science of autism namely 'Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and How to Think Smarter About People Who Think Differently', written by Steve Silberman has won the 2015 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction. This is the first of its kind winning in its 17 year history, reports The Independent.

The American writer, Steve Silberman has painstakingly explored the realms of autism, a childhood developmental disorder that has been widely misconstrued by the world. In his book, Silberman explores and researches deep into the 'condition of autism' tracing its roots way back to the time of the Nazis and outlining the evolutionary story up to present day era. It describes how the political and social influences over the ages molded the perception on autism, according to The Independent.

The story is also expressed through the eyes of those who have had first-hand experience dealing with this disorder. Scientifically and medically, autism is quite a complex issue to follow, but what is amazing about this book is that Silberman apparently uses anecdotes and narratives in a bid to break down the complicating nature of the context and presents a simpler version that would appeal and be easily grasped by the wider audience, reports The Independent.

According to The Guardian, the Chair of judges and Pulitzer-winning historian and journalist, Anne Applebaum, was quoted as saying that the book is a "tour de force of archival, journalistic and scientific research, both scholarly and widely accessible. Most importantly because it is powered by a strongly argued set of beliefs: that we should stop drawing sharp lines between what we assume to be 'normal' and 'abnormal', and that we should remember how much the differently-wired human brain has, can and will contribute to our world. He has injected a hopeful note into a conversation that's normally dominated by despair."

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