The Mind Tree: A Miraculous Child Breaks the Silence of Autism

Overview


Well-received on initial publication, The Mind Tree is truly an enthralling read. Although he is severely autistic and nearly nonverbal, Tito’s ability to communicate through his extraordinary writing is astonishing. At the age of three, Tito was diagnosed with severe autism. But his mother, with boundless hope and determination, read to him and taught him to write in English. She also challenged him to write his own stories. The result of their efforts is this remarkable book—written when he was eight to eleven...
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The Mind Tree: A Miraculous Child Breaks the Silence of Autism

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Overview


Well-received on initial publication, The Mind Tree is truly an enthralling read. Although he is severely autistic and nearly nonverbal, Tito’s ability to communicate through his extraordinary writing is astonishing. At the age of three, Tito was diagnosed with severe autism. But his mother, with boundless hope and determination, read to him and taught him to write in English. She also challenged him to write his own stories. The result of their efforts is this remarkable book—written when he was eight to eleven years old—comprised of profound and startling philosophical prose and poetry. During a New York Times interview, Tito scrawled on a yellow pad, “I need to write . . . It has become a part of me.”
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Editorial Reviews

Dr. Oliver Sacks
“This book is indeed amazing, shocking too…and forces us to reconsider the condition of the deeply autistic.”
Publishers Weekly
Now 15 years old, the Bengali boy known as "Tito" wrote the texts collected in this book between the ages of eight and 11. That fact would be remarkable in itself, given their exquisite beauty and concision in describing the world of their author ("the cobweb of uncertainty remained"), but Tito's severe autism, diagnosed when he was three, makes them little short of miraculous. Tito's mother Soma taught him to write in Bengali and in English by working with him intensively over years. While there have been skeptics of Tito's writing ability (as documented in 60 Minutes and Good Morning America features), the experience of reading the book together with testimony from psychiatrist Lorna Wing convinces that Tito wrote it himself. It documents, with patient and poetic clarity, the experience of not fitting in, of finding the world beautiful, of having trouble making oneself understood-in short, of life as most people experience it. (Oct.) Forecast: A 35,000 first printing is a fair bet on this book's appeal beyond the autism community, to parents and kids who have responded to Mattie Stepanek and other child writers. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
As the subject of stories on 60 Minutes and in the New York Times and People magazine, Mukhopadhyay, now 15, is internationally known for doing what was before thought impossible: born and raised in India, the severely autistic boy (he was, in fact, mute) was taught to write and communicate. Between eight and 11, he wrote this book, which describes his childhood, his feelings, and the training that he received from his mother, in turn providing what some have called a "map" to the autistic mind. Mukhopadhyay uses a fairly difficult style that could be described as artificially elegant. Reminiscent of "scripted" language (that is, words and phrases that autistic children read or hear and use as their own), his prose sounds unnatural for a young boy and could represent not only borrowed words but also borrowed meaning and feelings. The book would have been far stronger had a coauthor explained what Mukhopadhyay was experiencing and how others saw his condition. Despite these shortcomings, this child's perspective is recommended for public and academic libraries with comprehensive Autistic Spectrum Disorders collections. For more information on Mukhopadhyay, see his web site (www.cureautismnow.com/tito).-Corey Seeman, Univ. of Toledo Libs., OH Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781611450026
  • Publisher: Arcade Publishing
  • Publication date: 11/1/2011
  • Pages: 176
  • Sales rank: 972,749
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 7.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Tito Rajarshi Mukhopadhyay was diagnosed in early childhood with severe or low functioning non-verbal autism. He communicates primarily through writing and has learned to develop his reading, writing, and thinking abilities. The national organization Autism Speaks sponsored Tito and his mother, Soma, to come to the United States so he could participate in scientific trials. Tito is now an accomplished writer. He lives in Austin, Texas.
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Table of Contents

Foreword
The Voice of Silence 1
Beyond the Silence 93
All Through the Rainbow Path 125
The Mind Tree 167
Poems from Tito's Story 201
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