Sunday, March 20, 2011

An Autism Talk You Won't Want to Miss at Roanoke College

My friend Melanie Almeder, an English professor at Roanoke College, has put together a talk that will lure you if you have any interest in autism, courage, family togetherness and and a kind of victory that touches all of us.

The event is a talk by Ralph and Emily Savarese, who have become nationally prominent of late for their book Reasonable People. Their talk is “Smart Self's Walk Down Freedom's Trail: Autism and Artful Advocacy. Here’s Mel’s announcement:

The Visiting Writers' Committee of the English Department, the Jordan Endowment, the Education Department, the Chaplain's Office and the Sociology Department invite you to a talk: "'Smart Self's Walk Down Freedom's Trail': Autism and Artful Advocacy," with D.J., Emily, and Ralph James Savarese. March 30, 7 p.m. in the Wortman Ballroom at Roanoke College. There will be a book signing and reception following the talk. 

Ralph and Emily Savarese adopted an autistic boy named D.J., who had been "written off as severely retarded." Their story, told in Ralph and D.J.'s memoir, Reasonable People, which Newsweek called a “real life love story and a passionate manifesto for the rights of people with neurological disabilities," is the story of radical transformation forged by great persistence and love.

Ralph, Emily, and their son D.J. have been interviewed by NPR and CNN, among others, and have been guest speakers across the country. Their activism continues to inspire people across the world. For more information on the family and their writings go here and follow the link to Reasonable People.

1 comment:

  1. Once again, Dan, thank you so much for the information. My grandson is autistic - Aspergers. People just do not understand unless they are fortunate enough to experience a child like this. Fortunate? Yes. I've learned more from Devin about love and acceptance and seeing things from a totally different viewpoint, than I have from anyone else in my 53 years.