A Beautifully Written Autobiography

Topics: Autism, Asperger syndrome, The Help Pages: 2 (273 words) Published: February 11, 2001
What it means to be autistic. A very rare book, a beautifully written autobiography.

Life on the Outside
Gunilla Gerland
Translated by Joan Tate

From her earliest years Gunilla Gerland knew that she was 'different' – constantly fearful, preferring solitude because it was safe and unchanging, given to obsessive behaviour that provided a certain relief, scolded for things she could not help. Gunilla writes simply and frankly about herself and her attempts to find a way for herself when everything she felt and did seemed at odds with everyone else. Only at the end of the book does she come through and realise that, despite her difficulties and differences, she is in fact 'a real person'. Here, written with an outstanding ability to convey inner thoughts and feelings, is an account of autism from the inside.

A Real Person will be of immense value to families and professionals striving to understand autistic people in their care. But it also stands firmly on its own as a work of the highest literary quality. Its appeal is universal, its honesty devastating.

Gunilla Gerland was born with High Functioning Autism/Asperger syndrome which was not diagnosed until she reached adulthood. Throughout her childhood she felt herself lost in a strange and hostile world where she was 'different' from everyone else. Eventually, through the help of a psychiatrist, she was diagnosed and encouraged to use her gift for writing to tell her own story. This book is the result.

ISBN: 0 285 63398 8
Souvenir Press, London, UK
Can be ordered from: http://www.bookshop.co.uk/

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