File Name: mind blindness an essay on autism and theory of mind writer.zip
Mind-blindness is a concept of a cognitive divergence where an individual is unable to attribute mental states to others. As a result of this kind of social  and empathetic cognitive phenomenon, the individual is incapable of putting themselves "into someone else's shoes" and cannot conceptualize, understand or predict knowledge, thoughts, beliefs, emotions, feelings, desires, behaviours, actions and intentions of another person.
One of the key concepts in autism research — that people with autism have difficulties interpreting the actions and intentions of others — owes its existence to Simon Baron-Cohen , a British researcher and among the most provocative thinkers in the field. So does the first screening instrument for the infant siblings of children with autism, which Baron-Cohen developed in Few scientists have a career that spans as wide a spectrum in autism research as Baron-Cohen, professor of developmental psychopathology at the University of Cambridge in the U. He was fascinated by the children, who showed clear signs of intelligence but at the same time appeared oblivious to normal rules of social interaction. The job led him to a Ph. At the time, theory of mind — the ability to attribute mental states to others and interpret their actions — was a new concept, and it was thought that mind blindness , or the lack of theory of mind, might be the underlying cause of some aspects of autism. Baron-Cohen and Frith recruited 4-year-old children with autism to test this idea.
Most studies that measure theory of mind rely on a false-belief task. The mind blindness theory of autism 5 proposed that in autism spectrum conditions there are deficits in the normal process of empathy, relative to mental age. Theory of mind deficit: Theory of mind refers to the ability to make full mental states beliefs, desires, intentions, imagination, emotions, etc. Ships from and sold by Amazon. It will further outline empirical evidence derived from the review of two studies, collectively known as false belief tasks Theory of mind is impaired in people with autism. Jul 12, Marisa rated it liked it.
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This research compared the written compositions of 16 adults with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders and 16 neurotypical control participants, and examined the influence of theory of mind on their writing. Texts were assessed on 18 variables representing quality, mechanics, and length. It was found that adults with HFASD wrote lower quality narrative and expository texts, and narratives of shorter length. Theory of mind was positively associated with writing quality and text length across both genres. Autism spectrum disorder ASD is characterized by social deficits, particularly impairments in verbal and non-verbal communication, problems with social reciprocity and failure to develop and maintain peer relationships.
Having the right language skills is also necessary to pass tasks that test for theory of mind ability. An important study takes this line of work much further, by showing that deaf adults who grew up without much exposure to language fail false-belief tasks 1. This study, published in by Jennie Pyers and Ann Senghas , shows that language can have a causal role in the development of theory of mind. However, it is important to distinguish false-belief tasks, which rely on language, from the full-fledged theory of mind, which is more deeply impaired in people with autism. In the mid s, researchers published a series of papers demonstrating the early development of theory of mind in typical preschoolers. This test provides unequivocal evidence that children understand that a person can be mistaken about something they themselves understand.
The claim that autistic people lack a theory of mind—that they fail to understand that other people have a mind or that they themselves have a mind—pervades psychology. This article a reviews empirical evidence that fails to support the claim that autistic people are uniquely impaired, much less that all autistic people are universally impaired, on theory-of-mind tasks; b highlights original findings that have failed to replicate; c documents multiple instances in which the various theory-of-mind tasks fail to relate to each other and fail to account for autistic traits, social interaction, and empathy; c summarizes a large body of data, collected by researchers working outside the theory-of-mind rubric, that fails to support assertions made by researchers working inside the theory-of-mind rubric; and d concludes that the claim that autistic people lack a theory of mind is empirically questionable and societally harmful. The assertion that autistic people lack a theory of mind—that they fail to understand that other people have a mind or that they themselves have a mind—pervades psychology. In this article, we critically examine the empirical basis of this assertion. We review empirical evidence that fails to support the claim that autistic people are uniquely impaired, much less that all autistic people are universally impaired, on theory-of-mind tasks. We highlight seminal theory-of-mind findings that have failed to replicate. We document multiple instances in which the various theory-of-mind tasks fail to converge and fail to predict autistic traits, social interaction, and empathy.
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