So it seems there has been a little gain in exchange of a big loss. The medical classification of Asperger’s Syndrome is no longer considered a “Condition” by the medical authorities, but rather they changed it into a part of the autistic spectrum, where people with Asperger’s is considered more like a normal person with some traits of autism that impairs their communication capabilities.
At one hand it seem a gain to me because now we can be considered “normal with a handicap”, rather than a condition that calls for treatment and segregation. It is not what it supposed to be, but at least is closer to what it should be.
At the other hand, it is a big loss for many people who rely on the old classification to obtain help with the extremely high costs of treatment.
Still, I disagree with the whole thing anyway (what’s new).
You see, the problem is, we are considered with a handicap when it comes to reading face expressions and body language, among other things. But why should we be considered with such a problem? People consider a part of communication the ability to read and use face expression and body language, and they think that way because that’s the way it’s been done for thousands of years, but just because it is been used for that long doesn’t necessarily mean it is right!
Before developing a language, humans had to rely in sounds, face expression and body language to communicate with each other. Later a spoken language was developed, which supposed to override the need to use face expressions and body language as a way of communication, yet they were not discarded as a previous form of communication that is not needed anymore; rather it was retained and adapted into the newly developed spoken language communication system. The new, more efficient way of communication that was a spoken language did not replace the old system; instead it was just added to the old!!
If we have a spoken language with which we can convey more complex meanings by the use of specific words, why should we still use the old way of communication that wasn’t specific? It only leads to confusion and misunderstandings! Body language and facial expressions have been study to a scientific level by psychologists, and have been explained with the accuracy of words, but the only way it can be used efficiently is by learning those studies as if learning a new language; otherwise it would be used by people under their own concepts and perceptions, so no two people would read body language in the same way. If we are going to use body language and facial expressions as a part of normal human communication, it should be taught in schools together with the teaching of the spoken and written local language.
Even more, when you study a foreign language, you should also study the facial expressions and body language that are proper to the people who speaks that foreign language as their own. They live in a different country with a different environment and history, so they have come to develop a different personal perception of things, which leads them to have different body language and facial expressions. Just think of the stereotypes that exist for people in Italy, France, Germany, Finland, etc. They are considered to act and react in a different way of the others, which includes their gestures and the intensity of them. Shouldn’t we then study their body language and facial expressions together with the spoken and written language?
Take for instance the facial expression of the man in the picture above. Some people would say he is sad; other people would say he is intrigued; while other people would say he is about to ask a question. There are many possibilities at what the man in the picture is thinking and feeling, and it all depends on who is deciding what the man’s state of mind is. It depends on personal opinions rather than a logical line of classification. And it is somehow impossible to create a scientific table of facial expressions because there are so many factors involved, with so many of them completely unknown, that it just cannot be done. So civilization rely on individual opinions to make important decisions, like who a company should hire for a job. Wouldn’t you agree that, while looking at the man’s facial expression it is possible to see many possibilities, some of them completely opposite from the others? Just give it a try and look at the man thinking he is sad, then he is intrigued, then he feels curiosity for what you are going to say, etc.
The truth is, body language and facial expression as a way of communication is an obsolete system that pertains to the past of the human race, and it shouldn’t be used together with the spoken and written languages due to their inaccuracy by their extreme diversity among people’s behaviors.
Yet it is still in use.
Now, “normal” people use these obsolete systems still integrated in their ways of communications, and when faced with someone who doesn’t use it, but rather rely only in the specific meanings of spoken and written words as a more precise way of communication, it is considered a problem and a condition that should be treated like if it was a problem and a sickness, rather than seen as a more logical way of communication.
I know some people would say that body language and facial expression also help in communicating feelings, which some times are difficult to convey in words. I agree with that; but that would be an addition to the spoken language rather than the main part, as it is used today. The spoken word should be the main system of communication, and the body language and facial expression should be used as an addition and complement in helping “round” the intended concept trying to be communicated.
Just consider this; when it is about job interviews most expert in the field of helping people preparing for a job interview insist in the need of knowing how to use body language as the main part of helping to be selected for the position available. The interviewer seem to rely more in body language than what it is says in spoken words, so it is still using the original, inaccurate way of communication, rather than the more precise and newer advancement of the human race in the field of communication. What a waste of civilization!!
It is the same as if, when the human race advance (in many more thousands of years) to the point of telepathy, and it becomes the most used and main way of communication, still a job interviewer rely on what the person says in words more than what the person communicate in thoughts, as a way to make a decision for hiring! If advanced to the point of using telepathy as the new way of communication, shouldn’t it be necessary to discard the old way of communication as a less efficient system that pertains to the past?
We Aspies don’t have the brain wiring required to read and create specific facial expressions and body language as a way of communication. We rely on the straight meaning of words instead. Why then should we be “fixed and adapted” to the ability to half way use and understand of facial expressions and body language to communicate in society, when the whole physical system of communication is a retrograde tool that supposed to be discarded in favor of a more precise way of communication as it is the spoken and written language? Aren’t they not only using a retrograde system, but also trying to bring everybody back to the same? What’s the point of evolution then?
So we Aspies are segregated under the hiring system among many other elements of daily life, due to not knowing and not being capable of communicating in a retrograde system that “normal” people stubbornly keep using, when they already have a more advance and precise system provided to them after many thousand years of evolution of the human race. What a waste!