One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A developmental disorder of variable severity that is characterized by difficulty in social interaction and communication and by restricted or repetitive patterns of thought and behavior.
- ‘Public awareness of autism has increased over recent years, yet early recognition of autism remains variable.’
- ‘It may also play a role in disorders such as autism, where people have difficulties forming social bonds.’
- ‘Eight months ago, he joined the growing epidemic of children diagnosed with autism.’
- ‘They are reported to have discovered a possible link between fatty acid deficiency and childhood autism.’
- ‘It's crucial to have a clear, early diagnosis of autism if sufferers and their families are to be helped.’
- ‘But when he was a toddler, he was diagnosed as having a relatively mild form of autism.’
- ‘Again, even if such peptides are discovered, their relationship to autism remains entirely speculative.’
- ‘Long before its formal recognition in 1943, the concept of autism appeared in folklore.’
- ‘Children with conditions like cerebral palsy, autism and learning difficulties benefit.’
Early 20th century (originally with reference to a condition in which fantasy dominates over reality, regarded as a symptom of schizophrenia and other disorders): from Greek autos ‘self’ + -ism.
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