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The theory of the double empathy problem

Milton, Damian (2021) The theory of the double empathy problem. In: 20th Netherlands National Autism Congress, 19 Mar 2021, Online. (Unpublished) (KAR id:87967)


Embedded within diagnostic criteria for autism is the idea that autistic people have impaired social understanding. A number of psychological theories suggest autistic people have a deficit in empathising with others or in 'theory of mind'. It is certainly true that autistic people, especially when young, can struggle to process and understand the 'quick-fire' social interactions that many non-autistic people take for granted. Yet to what extent do such interactions require empathy? To what extent do non-autistic people acquire a 'theory of autistic mind'? Where does the ability to predict the thoughts and actions of others reside? This presentation reflects on the concept of empathy in relation to autistic people and their interactions with non-autistic people. According to the theory of the 'double empathy problem', these issues are due to a breakdown in reciprocity and mutual understanding that can happen between people of very different dispositions.

Item Type: Conference or workshop item (Lecture)
Uncontrolled keywords: Autism, double empathy problem, monotropism, interactional expertise
Subjects: R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC553.A88 Autism. Asperger's syndrome
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research > Tizard
Depositing User: Damian Milton
Date Deposited: 07 May 2021 16:51 UTC
Last Modified: 10 Dec 2022 23:41 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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