How many times have you heard that people with autism lack creativity? That they reject affection or suffer from mental retardation? As the number of children diagnosed with autism surges, researchers and educators are racing to define the amorphous nature of this spectrum disorder and its wide range of symptoms. But in trying to characterize this widely varying group, people often perpetuate a host of limiting and potentially damaging misconceptions in the media, in academic journals and even in textbooks. These myths don't holdup when examined, and they don't reflect Jonathan Alderson's experience working with more than 2,000 children and families over two decades. Provocative and meticulously researched, Challenging the Myths of Autism looks at the most prevalent fallacies, explains how they developed, examines why dispelling them matters and, most importantly, sets out a new understanding that will change the way parents and professionals view autism. With examples from his own practice, Alderson charts a whole new realm of possibilities for treatment and research.