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1.  Autistic autobiography 
Autism narratives are not just stories or histories, describing a given reality. They are creating the language in which to describe the experience of autism, and hence helping to forge the concepts in which to think autism. This paper focuses on a series of autobiographies that began with Grandin's Emergence. These are often said to show us autism from the ‘inside’. The paper proposes that instead they are developing ways to describe experience for which there is little pre-existing language. Wittgenstein has many well-known aphorisms about how we understand other people directly, without inference. They condense what he had found in Wolfgang Köhler's Gestalt Psychology. These phenomena of direct understanding what other people are doing are, Köhler wrote, ‘the common property and practice of mankind'. They are not the common property and practice of people with autism. Ordinary language is rich in age-old ways to describe what others are thinking, feeling and so forth. Köhler's phenomena are the bedrock on which such language rests. There is no such discourse for autism, because Köhler's phenomena are absent. But a new discourse is being made up right now, i.e. ways of talking for which the autobiographies serve as working prototypes.
PMCID: PMC2677587  PMID: 19528032
Köhler; Wittgenstein; Grandin; Donna Williams; Mukhopadhyay; Tammet
3.  Out of the wave: The meaning of suffering and relief from suffering as described in autobiographies by survivors of the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami 
The aim of this study was to explore the meaning of suffering and relief from suffering as described in autobiographies by tourists who experienced the tsunami on 26 December 2004 and lost loved ones. A lifeworld approach, inspired by the French philosopher Merleau-Ponty's phenomenology of perception, was chosen for the theoretical framework. This catastrophe totally changed the survivors' world within a moment. In this new world, there were three main phases: the power of remaining focused, a life of despair, and the unbearable becoming bearable. Life turns into a matter of making the unbearable bearable. Such challenging experiences are discussed in terms of the philosophy of Weil, Jaspers, and Merleau-Ponty. The survivors of the tsunami catastrophe were facing a boundary situation and “le malheur,” the unthinkable misfortune. Even at this lowest level of misfortune, joy is possible to experience. This is part of the survivors' ambivalent experiences of their lifeworld. In this world of the uttermost despair there are also rays of hope, joy, and new life possibilities.
PMCID: PMC2956576  PMID: 20957070
Autobiographies; lifeworld; catastrophe; tsunami; suffering; relief from suffering; le malheur; boundary situation
4.  An autobiography 
The Eugenics Review  1950;42(2):98-99.
PMCID: PMC2973115
5.  A Retirement and A Reservation: A Retrospective Autobiography 
The Permanente Journal  2012;16(2):65-66.
A retirement is a rite of passage that requires careful planning, because it forces a retiree to make a shift in the paradigm in life.
For 37 years, I was a healing professional, a breadwinner, and a working spouse. I am now a jobless loner, an inactive pensioner, and a homebound spouse. In this retrospective autobiography, I suggest a few points to help my younger colleagues to better their upcoming retirement: professional, financial, social, and familial. To overcome Erikson's identity crisis, I volunteered to be a wounded healer at Warm Springs Indian Reservation.
My volunteer medical service at Warm Springs Indian Reservation was a good antidote to creatively overcome my postretirement blues.
PMCID: PMC3383167  PMID: 22745621
24.  Honest Autobiography 
British Medical Journal  1970;2(5711):718.
PMCID: PMC1700612

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