The Neurodiversity Documentary project is an idea that emerged out of the discussions at the Autistic Collaboration Auckland meeting in December 2019. The project aims to engage with autistic and otherwise neurodivergent people over the course of 2020 to jointly produce the content for a multi-part in-depth documentary series as well as a full-length documentary movie (60 to 120 minutes) about neurodiversity, and to publish at least the first parts of the series in 2020.
There is an urgent need to educate the general public about the lives of neurodivergent people from a perspective that is not in any way influenced by the autism medical industrial complex.
There are two important audiences for the documentary:
- People who are autistic or otherwise neurodivergent, but who are currently not aware of the fact – so that these people are given tools for finding and connecting with neurodivergent peers.
- Members of the wider public who are only aware of autism and neurodiversity via the lenses of mainstream news media, corporate PR campaigns, and the autism medical industrial complex.
We envisage to publish the documentary online in the public domain, and to organise local screenings in as many countries and locations as possible.
All neurodivergent participants in the documentary form the editorial board:
The editorial board determines by democratic consensus which parts of contributions to include. Individual board members have the ability to influence how their contribution is edited and integrated, and have the ability to withdraw their contribution or parts thereof in case they feel their perspective is misrepresented.
- Reflections on life, relationships and society by autistic and neurodivergent elders and neurodiversity activists
- The development of unique individual autistic and neurodivergent learning systems, skills, knowledge, and world views
- From learning about autism and neurodiversity, via identifying as autistic and/or neurodivergent, to the social model of disability
- Diagnosing the ills of society, and the dangers of neurotypical monoculture and human education/normalisation factories
- Examples of success on autistic and creative neurodivergent terms, and of the challenges, struggles, and trauma along the way
- Autistic culture, intersectionality, autistic community, and autistic collaboration
This project is currently in the design stage. The core project team involves over 30 neurodivergent artists, professionals, activists and scholars from all corners of the world, including:
- Allison Hoffmann, New York, US
- Anna Charest, New Hampshire, US
- Irma Aguilar-Delfin, México
- Jenna Mikes, Florida, US
- Jorn Bettin, New Zealand
- Mark Leslie, New York, US
- Nick Walker, California, US
- Panda Mery, United Kingdom
- Quinn Dexter, Bristol, United Kingdom
- Ryan Boren, US
- Sandra Koren, Slovenia
- Sarah Bettin, New Zealand
- Slade Winstone, New Zealand
- Individual reflections
- Reading of texts submitted by non verbal autistic people
Call for participation
We are looking for further autistic and otherwise neurodivergent people from all over the world, in particular in countries in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and South America, who are interested in contributing material and in assisting with various skills in producing the documentary:
- Script development
- Video and music editing
- Video production
- Music production
- Participation in interviews
- Translation into English and into other languages
- Online marketing
- Organising local screenings
We realise that the autistic community has already produced many high quality videos about autism and neurodiversity. If you would like to make existing content that is aligned with the themes outlined above available for reuse, this is another option of contributing to the project.
To participate in this project, you can either email Jorn.Bettin@s23m.com or use the form below to indicate which skills you would like to contribute.
We are looking forward to collaborating with you on this Autistic Collaboration project!