The Voice of Autism; Asperger's Syndrome: A Human Experience

Watt, Susanmary
Harvey, Siobhan
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Master of Creative Writing
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Auckland University of Technology

My thesis, GHOSTWALKER, is a contemporary adult novel. Its protagonist, Dylan has Asperger’s Syndrome (hereafter called AS). In writing a novel based around AS, certain themes and questions have been created and represented around what it is to have Autism, how this is portrayed in adult fiction, and even more importantly, whether it is valid to portray AS as a disability in 2018. It is accompanied by the exegesis; The voice of Autism; Asperger’s syndrome: A human experience. It unfolds as a creative work, drawing attention to relevant texts that have influenced the writing of GHOSTWALKER. My novel is inspired and informed by other works of young adult contemporary fiction and adult fiction on the subject of AS including: The curious Incident of the dog in the night time by Mark Haddon, The Colour of Bee Larkham’s Murder by Sarah J. Harris, Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine, Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon, Shtum by Jem Lester, The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd and the non-fiction account of living with Autism from a Young Adults perspective, Fall Down 7 Times Get Up 8 by Naoki Higashida. Non-fiction works by Patricia Romanowski Bashe’s book Asperger’s Syndrome: The Oasis Guide, with a forward by Tony Attwood, PHD, and My A-Z of Living with Asperger’s Syndrome and Autism by Lynne Watkins, The Prodigy’s Cousin by Joanne Ruthsatz, and Kimberly Stephens, and Seven Keys to Unlock Autism by Elaine Hall and Dianne Isaacs, also contribute creatively and critically to GHOSTWALKER and the exegesis. With greater reflection, particular attention is given to questioning firstly, how the narrative of first person/protagonists has been used to draw the reader into the AS perspective from the inside out, secondly how using the third person subjective, can be used for the inward voice, and narrative, giving an understanding of what it is to have AS.

Aspergers , Syndrome , Autism , Synaesthesia
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