External perspective 1, Bernhard J. Schmidt

1.) What are the diagnostic criteria for autism in the country?


2.) What is the most common autism theory?

It is not a theory, but a dogma. Created by Rimland and Lovaas in the late 1960┬┤s.
Main points of the dogma are:
– Parents are the experts, more than anyone else

– autism has only biogenetic or biomedical causes

– autism has no developmental causes
– autism can only be treated with diets, ABA …

The parents’ organizations such as “autism speak” have an enormous impact on research due to their huge financial resources. Thus, dozens of misleading “theories” have been generated in recent years, especially by Simon Baron-Cohen.

3.) Are there alternative autism theories? Which?


4.) What is the most common therapy approach for autistic children?


5.) Are there alternative therapies? Which

So-called child-centered and child-initiated support programs such as
– Son-Rise (R)
– DIR/Floortime (R)

but both are, as well as ABA, very commercialized. Both lack a theoretical basis.

6.) Defining culture as an interplay of tradition and innovation, has the country a more traditional (e.g. importance of authority and hierarchy) or innovative structure?

With the Declaration of Independence, all European roots were deliberately cut.
Therefore, the US lacks a tradition as a base, and is at the mercy of the ever-accelerating change of “innovations”.

7.) What are the severity levels of a developmental disorder diagnosed as autism?

Complete Spectrum

8.) What are the philosophical and psychological foundations? In Russia e.g. it is the Vygotsky-developed “cultural-historical-concept” [Vygotsky, L.S: Fundamentals of Defectology].


Schmidt, Bernhard J. “Autism and the Refrigerator Mother Myth. A Rehabilitation of Bruno Bettelheim” ISBN 978-3749446469

9.) Critical perspectives:

Lynn Waterhouse

Bernhard J. Schmidt

  • Autism and the Refrigerator Mother Myth. A Rehabilitation of Bruno Bettelheim
  • Autism – “Blaming the Parents”. Research between Dogma and Taboo
  • The Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy as a Group Phenomenon

Additions, criticism, different perspective? Please send your ideas to