Use of the Machine Metaphor Within Autism Research

Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10882-007-9061-9

Cite this article as:
Danforth, S. & Naraian, S. J Dev Phys Disabil (2007) 19: 273. doi:10.1007/s10882-007-9061-9


Traditionally, metaphor has been viewed a literary trope standing in opposition to literal forms of writing in the natural and social sciences. In recent decades, however, a multi-disciplinary field of cognitive linguistic research has developed. This research finds metaphor at the heart of both everyday and scientific thinking. Metaphor is understood to be vital to the development of useful theories within the sciences. In this paper, the authors analyze the use of the machine metaphor in recent autism research, allowing for an interrogation of that research in terms of generativity and utility.


Student-machine Autism Machine metaphor 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Teaching & LearningOhio State UniversityColumbusUSA
  2. 2.University of Missouri—St. LouisSt. LouisUSA

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