March 24, 2008

Elizabeth Moon’s “The Speed of Dark”, Mark Haddon’s “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time”

Posted in Books tagged , , , , , at 6:23 pm by myrlinn

This is not meant to be a review, since you just need to google these titles, and you’ll find many very good reviews already.

What I’d like to mention here: If you haven’t read Elizabeth Moon’s “The Speed of Dark” and Mark Haddon’s "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time" already, I would strongly recommend them.

They provide valuable insight into the autistic mind and invites us to ponder important questions (philosophical,  social, and intellectual), while being at the same time extremely well-crafted, enjoyable stories.

I enjoyed “The Speed of Dark” a bit more than “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time”, but that’s probably because of my particular interest in philosophical questions.

In “The Speed of Dark”, the main character, an adult autistic individual, is presented with the “opportunity” to have his autism “cured”. But will the “cure” change who he is?

That’s a question that I ponder as well. We could probably remake ourselves into a different type of person. If we’re meek, it’s not inconceivable that we can learn to be more aggressive. If we’re unambitious, we can probably teach ourselves to be more achievement-oriented. Well, at least that’s what all the so-called “self-improvement” books try to tell us. Yet, have you ever thought: when you gain some character trait, you stand lose others you’ve had for ever so long. Do you then lose some essence of yourself? Will you miss the old you? Will you LIKE the new “improved” you?

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