What Has Autism Ever Done For Us?

My latest book, entitled "What Has Autism Ever Done For Us? How the autistic way of thinking revolutionised the world" is now available!

In this book I propose that the autistic way of thinking is responsible for many revolutionary ideas, discoveries and achievements throughout history. I examine the autistic traits of a wide variety of people, past and present, from Newton to Andy Warhol, Marie Curie to Greta Thunberg, showcasing how their autistic characteristics have contributed towards their achievements.

As celebration of those on the autistic spectrum, I hope this book shows that society shouldn’t just view autistic people in a different light, but society needs us – a message that should be understood, accepted, and embraced by all.

Book Reviews

One of the most interesting books I have ever read


This is one of the most interesting and insightful books I have ever read. I would encourage not only people involved in the autism world to read this but also those interested in history, science, music and art. I particularly enjoyed reading the life stories of some amazing individuals and seeing how their autistic traits influenced the amazing things they achieved. At the end of each chapter, Michael has given a description of each autistic trait that the individual displays. It is so well written and easy to read. Definitely a book I will be recommending to lots of people!

Alex Manners, Neurodiversity and Autism Speaker, Author of "That's Not Right! My Life Living with Asperger's"

"This is an important book which demonstrates the importance of traits which are often de-valued. As well as reinforcing pride and self-esteem for young people, I hope teachers and educators will also read this book to challenge some of the prejudices held about autism. This would be a fabulous resource to use in schools to help students recognise the contribution that autistic thinking has made to the world."

Carol Povey, Director, National Autistic Society

"This is a fascinating and engaging book on the contributions made to the advancement of society and culture by autistic people and those with autistic traits. Well done."

Steve Silberman, author of Neurotribes

"If you want to read a very well written, fascinating, well-researched book and are interested  in  history, brilliantly discovered snippets of information, people, have a sense of humour and curiosity, and have an interest in autism, and are willing to reflect on autism in a way rarely portrayed in the literature: read this.

Michael’s book is a triumph. It engaged me primarily because of the ‘autism hook’ – my passionate interest (or, as the less-informed might refer to it, my obsession) has long been autistic people, so having the opportunity to read about (in part) an autistic person from an autobiographical perspective, as well as reading about individuals associated with autism in various ways, was always going to be a winner.

But what became evident from the early stages of reading was that this book is so much more – it is an historical tome, part-ethnography, fanciful, humourous, delightful, celebratory – and, overall, a very fine read.

It is refreshing indeed to read a book with autism in the title that is so honest and positive about autism – so much of the narrative, to this day, remains pejorative, ableist, discriminatory – not least downright incorrect; Michael’s book sets out the​ message from the title through to the conclusion (and, indeed, the final line) that society shouldn’t  just view autistic people in a different light, but society needs autistic people – a message that should be understood, accepted, and embraced by all.

So – to reiterate – read this; recommend it; make it a best seller."

Dr Luke Beardon, Senior Lecturer in Autism, The Autism Centre, Sheffield

"This book is unique in that it makes the compelling case for why each of us when faced with different thinkers, one should indeed question old assumptions and embrace new ideas and perspectives. In an increasingly divided and pressured world, we may well need the brilliance of what diversity in thinking, including autism, can bring us."

Michael Vermeersch, Accessibility Product Marketing Manager, Microsoft