Asperger Profiles: Cultural Influences


We live in a rapidly changing society that can be more hospitable to some people than to others. The rate of social and cultural change in and of itself can be overwhelming to those who typically struggle with transitions. Many people with an Asperger profile can easily feel over-stimulated by lights, sounds, and textures. In an increasingly crowded, technological world, Asperger individuals might find it more and more challenging to avoid the triggers that can overwhelm their system. Moreover, many places of work now require fast-paced multi-tasking, which can be challenging for minds that are better wired for focused attention. Much of the sensitive, detail-oriented work that historically was performed by humans is now more typically performed by machines in an industrialized world. Perhaps this is why we are seeing a particularly high concentration of Asperger/autism spectrum diagnoses in people who work in areas that still demand sustained focus: technology, academia, music, art. Moreover, extroversion is highly valued in a modern world that promotes networking and sustained social interaction. This can be a struggle for those who thrive in more solitary environments or feel drained from extended social interaction. Additionally, a general breakdown of structured community spaces outside of the workspace can exacerbate loneliness and isolation for people who might already have challenges creating connections.