Challenging Misleading Autism Stereotypes

Autism Stereotypes pic
Autism Stereotypes
Image: autismspeaks.org

After receiving his training at National Bartenders School in Woodbridge, New Jersey, Max Edelsack is a nationally licensed bartender who is seeking a position in the service industry. In his free time, Max Edelsack volunteers for a local organization that advocates for autism awareness.

Autism is a developmental disorder characterized by deficits in social communication and pervasive repetitive behavior. Due to the nature of the condition, public awareness of autism has been difficult to find.

Until recently, autism has been met with judgmental attitudes and confusion. Despite the huge range of behavioral manifestations along the autism spectrum, the uneducated public has often resorted to stereotypes, some of which are very misleading.

The stigma has greatly limited the employment opportunities of adults with autism; only 15 percent are employed. Carol Povey, director of the National Autistic Society’s Centre for Autism, believes that the most important step in changing this situation is to challenge the prevailing stereotypes. Although such a large-scale goal is a huge challenge, the goal is attainable by adopting a holistic approach at the national level while empowering people at the grassroots level to initiate change within their communities.

The Story of Nirvana’s Unexpected Hit

Smells Like Teen Spirit pic
Smells Like Teen Spirit
Image: nirvana.com

Max Edelsack received his bachelor’s degree in sports communication from Marist College in 2016. A music lover, Max Edelsack’s favorite band is Nirvana.

Formed in 1987 in Aberdeen, Washington, Nirvana has turned out to be one of second-generation punk’s most successful acts. After the release of their sophomore album, 1991’s Nevermind, Nirvana changed alternative rock, bringing the genre into the mainstream.

The band’s iconic song is Smells Like Teen Spirit, the lead single from Nevermind. At the time, the song was considered an unlikely hit.

The dominating artists on the 1991 pop charts were singers like Paula Abdul and Mariah Carey. Compared to the current hits, Smells Like Teen Spirit was considered loud and unintelligible, yet the song reached number 6 on the Billboard Hot 100.

NPR columnist Guy Raz believes that Smells Like Teen Spirit became a hit because it appealed to the so-called “slacker generation.” While the song was expected to resonate with angst-ridden teenagers, it became a crossover anthem that was popular with the mainstream audience.