Autism is a developmental behavior disorder in which a child lacks social interaction and communication skills. It appears within the first 3 years of a child's life. It was identified in the 1940s and was not a term, or even a concept, in the 1860s. Leo Kanner and Hans Asperger medically described it as autism, in the 1940s.
Individuals with autism are intellectually defective and typically exhibit “mental aloneness. This aloneness whenever possible, disregards, ignores, shuts out anything that comes to the child from the outside”. An autistic child lacks contact to people, however, thoroughly enjoys objects. For instance, Stephen Wiltshire, an autistic savant, was under the observation of Chris Marris, a teacher for the disabled children. Chris described Stephen as a child who “knew the names of all the others [children], but there was no sense of interaction or friendship with them. He was an isolated little chap”.
Autistic children have “an obsessive insistence on sameness, in the form of repetitive, stereotyped movements and noises”. They are always preoccupied by their highly focused thoughts and fascinations. Other striking features about autistic children include: the lack of eye contact and abnormal use of language. Instead of following the demands of the environment, they follow their own impulse.
Autistic savants do not develop as normal talents do; they are talented from the beginning. “Savant talents resemble devices, ready-made, preset, and ready to go off”. For instance, at age 7, Stephen’s art include singular and multiple talents. Singular talents emerge at an early age, developing with speed, and “appear in about 10 percent of the autistic”. Savant talents have a more autonomous quality than normal ones as well—“Stephen will look around, listen to his Walkman, sing, or even talk while he is drawing”.
Some savants have great verbal powers, however, all have extraordinary powers of memory. Majority of “idiot savants” are autistic....