Cover image for The boy who felt too much : how a renowned neuroscientist and his son changed our image of autism forever
Title:
The boy who felt too much : how a renowned neuroscientist and his son changed our image of autism forever
Uniform Title:
Junge, der zu viel fühlte. English
ISBN:
9781948924788
Edition:
First English-language edition.
Physical Description:
222 pages ; 22 cm
Personal Subject:
Summary:
"An international bestseller, the story behind Henry Markram's breakthrough theory about autism, and how a family's unconditional love led to a scientific paradigm shift. Henry Markram is the Elon Musk of neuroscience, the man behind the billion-dollar Blue Brain Project to build a supercomputer model of the brain. He has set the goal of decoding all disturbances of the mind within a generation. This quest is personal for him. The driving force behind his grand ambition has been his son Kai, who suffers from autism. Raising Kai made Henry Markram question all that he thought he knew about neuroscience, and then inspired his groundbreaking research that would upend the conventional wisdom about autism, expressed in his now-famous theory of the Intense World Syndrome. When Kai was first diagnosed, his father consulted studies and experts. He knew as much about the human brain as almost anyone but still felt as helpless as any parent confronted with this condition in his child. What's more, the scientific consensus that autism was a deficit of empathy didn't mesh with Markram's experience of his son. He became convinced that the disorder, which has seen a 657 percent increase in diagnoses over the past decade, was fundamentally misunderstood. Bringing his world-class research to bear on the problem, he devised a radical new theory of the disorder: People like Kai don't feel too little; they feel too much. Their senses are too delicate for this world"--
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Summary

Summary

An International Bestseller, the Story behind Henry Markram's Breakthrough Theory about Autism, and How a Family's Unconditional Love Led to a Scientific Paradigm Shift

Henry Markram is the Elon Musk of neuroscience, the man behind the billion-dollar Blue Brain Project to build a supercomputer model of the brain. He has set the goal of decoding all disturbances of the mind within a generation. This quest is personal for him. The driving force behind his grand ambition has been his son Kai, who has autism. Raising Kai made Henry Markram question all that he thought he knew about neuroscience, and then inspired his groundbreaking research that would upend the conventional wisdom about autism, expressed in his now-famous theory of Intense World Syndrome.

When Kai was first diagnosed, his father consulted studies and experts. He knew as much about the human brain as almost anyone but still felt as helpless as any parent confronted with this condition in his child. What's more, the scientific consensus that autism was a deficit of empathy didn't mesh with Markram's experience of his son. He became convinced that the disorder, which has seen a 657 percent increase in diagnoses over the past decade, was fundamentally misunderstood. Bringing his world-class research to bear on the problem, he devised a radical new theory of the disorder: People like Kai don't feel too little; they feel too much. Their senses are too delicate for this world.


Author Notes

Lorenz Wagner , born in 1970, is one of the most prominent profile writers and journalists in Europe. His report "The Son Code" about Henry and Kai Markram rapidly became one of the most-read articles in the Süddeutsche Magazin . Lorenz Wagner has been awarded the prestigious Prix Franco-Allemand du Journalisme (PFAJ), among other prizes. He is bilingual, French and German, speaks English as well, lived and studied in France, and resides in Germany.

Leon Dische Becker is a writer, editor, and translator from Berlin currently living in Los Angeles. An alum of Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Spiegel Online , and the Los Angeles Review of Books , Leon recently worked as the editor-in-chief of The Towner and Fold Magazine . His essays have appeared in Vice magazine, the Daily Beast , the Awl , the Los Angeles Review of Books , Der Spiegel , Der Freitag , Block Magazin , and Hanser's Akzente , among many other more-or-less venerable publications.


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Autism diagnoses have risen dramatically in the last decade, and researchers are hard at work looking for its causation. Enter the subject of journalist Wagner's new book, Henry Markram, the neuroscientist behind the Blue Brain Project, which aims to build a supercomputer model of the brain, inspired and driven by Henry's son, Kai, who has autism. Kai's disability made Markram question everything he knew about the brain, and this questioning later shook the autism research world when Markram introduced his Intense World Syndrome theory, upending the prevailing worldview that individuals with autism lack empathy. Instead, postulates Markram, they feel too much. VERDICT Wagner does an exceptional job of mixing biography with complex yet accessible neuroscience. Essential for parents, educators, physicians, and specialists working with children of all ages.--Virginia Johnson, John Curtis P.L., Hanover, MA


Table of Contents

I The Mystery
1 Is That Your Kid?p. 1
2 The Boy Who Changed Everythingp. 8
3 The Checkp. 15
4 Evaluating Kaip. 23
5 The Suspicionp. 31
6 San Franciscop. 38
7 The Cobrap. 42
8 The Foxp. 49
9 Lynda Sees It Firstp. 57
II The Hunt
1 Powerlessp. 67
2 Saved from the Wastebasketp. 71
3 Kamila, the Astronautp. 76
4 A Strange Boyp. 83
5 Doubtp. 90
6 Don't Cross That Linep. 96
7 Back in the Land of the Special Peoplep. 105
8 Tania Can't See Itp. 113
9 Last Chancep. 119
10 The Treep. 125
III Understanding
1 How Kai Saw the Worldp. 133
2 What Have We Done?p. 136
3 No Window Seat?p. 146
4 Counterintuitivep. 153
5 Lettersp. 162
6 Building a Brainp. 168
7 Fighting with Colleaguesp. 176
8 Monica Is Cryingp. 185
9 Pioneers and Child Prodigiesp. 194
10 Great Expectationsp. 198
11 Neededp. 209
12 Beloved Kaip. 218
Acknowledgmentsp. 221