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*Trigger Warning!*: Who was Hans Asperger?

Greatshield17

An Appeal to Heaven!
V.I.P Member
Whenever Aspergers comes up, a common response among Autistic people is to claim that Hans Asperger was an evil Nazi eugenic scientist and demand that people stop identifying as Aspies; @Aspie_With_Attitude did a video on this. Needless to say this kind of treatment really turns me off from any dialogue with people like that, and I assert that this is actually a non-sequitur.

But who was the real Hans Asperger? Based on what I’ve read, (which isn’t much, hence why I’m making this thread.) Asperger only surrendered one or two kids to the Nazis so he could continue his research; that sounds more like cowardice (which is terrible) than genuine devotion to eugenics. Is that all there is, or is there more? What do we know about Hans Asperger?
 
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Gerontius

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
No such thing as "only" surrending a couple kids to the literal Nazis, though.

Good question though, ought to make a nice discussion
 

Sapphire K

Autistic Demigirl! (She/They/It)
V.I.P Member
A Nazi that actively sent Autistic people to their death. That is why I do not like the term "Aspergers" and find it weird that people cling on to the term "Aspergers" so much. Aspergers has already been proven to be outdated and unecessary as a diagnosis, and it having Nazi ties gives even more reason not to use it anymore.
 

MyLifeAsAnAspie

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
Yes, It's hard to overlook his complicity in the worst of eugenics. I also don't think that is a reason to cancel him for his work in discovering the spectrum. Don't forget the way too many kids elsewhere were sent to snake-pit institutions where passive euthanasia might have been going on. I recently had the book "Ten Days in a Madhouse" on that subject. Although it was much earlier (1887), the sadistic and neglectful treatment of the patients was extreme.
 

Streetwise

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
Research
Open Access
Published: 19 April 2018
Hans Asperger, National Socialism, and “race hygiene” in Nazi-era Vienna
Herwig Czech
Molecular Autism volume 9, pages1–43 (2018)Cite this article

159k Accesses

36 Citations

1738 Altmetric

Metricsdetails

A Correction to this article was published on 21 June 2021

This article has been updated

Abstract
Background
Hans Asperger (1906–1980) first designated a group of children with distinct psychological characteristics as ‘autistic psychopaths’ in 1938
Hans Asperger's name for high functioning autism! 'autistic psychopaths'
 

Crossbreed

Neur-D Missionary ☝️
V.I.P Member
I think of it as Dr. Asperger discovered ASD1.
That way we won't have to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Kanner (who discovered ASD2/3) was not a Nazi, but his pronouncement that autism was the product of being raised by a "frigid" mother has done (and is still doing) a lot of damage, too.

Wing, the mother of an autistic daughter, begged to differ.
 
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Crossbreed

Neur-D Missionary ☝️
V.I.P Member
‘autistic psychopaths
If you look at his materials in context, I believe that he used it in the same way that we now use "dys-social," meaning social klutzes, not being anti-social...

I believe that his science (in this matter) was good.
It was his character that was questionable.
(Nazis were capable of effective science.
THEY were the anti-social ones!)
 

Streetwise

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
If you look at his materials in context, I believe that he used it in the same way that we now use "dys-social," meaning social klutzes, not being anti-social...

I believe that his science (in this matter) was good.
It was his character that was questionable.
(Nazis were capable of effective science.
THEY were the anti-social ones!)
I DISAGREE COMPLETELY and I was quoting Asperger's findings
 

Sapphire K

Autistic Demigirl! (She/They/It)
V.I.P Member
Yes, It's hard to overlook his complicity in the worst of eugenics. I also don't think that is a reason to cancel him for his work in discovering the spectrum. Don't forget the way too many kids elsewhere were sent to snake-pit institutions where passive euthanasia might have been going on. I recently had the book "Ten Days in a Madhouse" on that subject. Although it was much earlier (1887), the sadistic and neglectful treatment of the patients was extreme.
No, it is enough. Besides, his research proved insufficient anyways.

I also heard he stole a lot of work from a Jewish woman, as well. Not surprising considering his moral and political alignment.
 

tree

Blue/Green
Staff member
V.I.P Member
Non-complicit: Revisiting Hans Asperger's Career in Nazi-era Vienna - PubMed
"Recent allegations that pediatrician Hans Asperger legitimized Nazi policies, including forced sterilization and child euthanasia, are refuted with newly translated and chronologically-ordered information that takes into account Hitler's deceptive 'halt' to the T4 euthanasia program in 1941. It is highly unlikely that Asperger was aware of the T4 program when he referred Herta Schreiber to Am Spiegelgrund or when he mentioned that institution 4 months later on the medical chart of another (unrelated) girl, Elisabeth Schreiber. Asperger campaigned vigorously from 1938 to 1943 to have his specialization, Curative Education, take priority in the diagnosis and treatment of disabled children over other fields that promoted Nazi racial hygiene policies. He neither disparaged his patients nor was he sexist."
 

unperson

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
I always think how many of us he saved by letting his work gather dust in a drawer for so long until it was re-examined in oh late 80s. Don't know that much about the guy though.
 

Aspie_With_Attitude

Well-Known Member
V.I.P Member
Whenever Aspergers comes up, a common response among Autistic people is to claim that Hans Asperger was an evil Nazi eugenic scientist and demand that people stop identifying as Aspies; @Aspie_With_Attitude did a video on this. Needless to say this kind of treatment really turns me off from any dialogue with people like that, and I assert that this is actually a non-sequitur.
But who was the real Hans Asperger? Based on what I’ve read, (which isn’t much, hence why I’m making this thread.) Asperger only surrendered one or two kids to the Nazis so he could continue his research; that sounds more like cowardice (which is terrible) than genuine devotion to eugenics. Is that all there is, or is there more? What do we know about Hans Asperger?

This is my final account to what was recently said about Asperger, it was like Indiana Jones in "The Last Crusade" when Doctor Jones didn't know that Doctor Elsa Schneider was a Nazi when I did first thought of the autistic channel "Aspie With Attitude".

 

Orange Glasses

Well-Known Member
Dr Asperger was definitely NOT a Nazi. Period.

Attached is Dr Tony Attwood commenting on this topic which starts at 12:25 into the video.

 

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