Send in the Idiots (Paperback)

Stories from the Other Side of Autism

By Kamran Nazeer

Bloomsbury USA, 9781582346205, 240pp.

Publication Date: April 3, 2007

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (4/4/2006)

List Price: 13.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


In 1982, when he was four years old, Kamran Nazeer was enrolled in a special school alongside a dozen other children diagnosed with autism. Calling themselves the Idiots, these kids received care that was at the cutting edge of developmental psychology. Now a policy adviser in England, Kamran decides to visit four of his old classmates to find out the kind of lives that they are living now, how much they've been able to overcome and what remains missing.

Bringing to life the texture of autistic lives and the limitations that the condition presents, Nazeer also relates the ways in which those can be eased over time, and with the right treatment.Using his own experiences to examine such topics as the difficulties of language, conversation as performance, and the politics of civility, "Send in the Idiots" is also a rare and provocative exploration of the way that people all people learn to think and feel. Written with unmatched insight and striking personal testimony, Kamran Nazeer's account is a stunning, invaluable, and utterly unique contribution to the literature of what makes us human.

About the Author

Kamran Nazeer grew up in New York, Jeddah, Islamabad, and Glasgow. He has a PhD in Legal Philosophy from Oxford and currently works as a Policy Advisor for the British government. He has published work in U.K. newspapers and magazines.

Praise For Send in the Idiots: Stories from the Other Side of Autism

"[A] touching book...these words...may in themselves ease the agony of parents and grandparents who have seen their children inexplicably skid away into a place where they seem untouchable, locked into an inscrutable world of their own."--Washington Post Book World
"[An] innovative examination of autism...[Nazeer's] memorable writing style, humorous but stripped of all subjectivity, is superbly adapted to convey something of an autistic's world view."--New Yorker
"It's a question that everyone has asked themselves: What happened to those kids I knew in grade school?  But when those kids were in an autism classroom, it's a question you never expect to get answered...until now.  This is a brilliant look inside a world of outsiders--a story not just of autistic children and their fate in the world, but of how all of us grow, grow apart, and sometimes even find our own way in the long journey from childhood to adulthood."--Paul Collins, author of Sixpence House and Not Even Wrong