Surely, most of us must’ve heard the word ‘eccentric’, being used to describe, the famous Scientist and Nobel Prize Winner, Albert Einstein, who is recognized the most for developing the Theory of Relativity. Today, researchers believe that the oddities in his behaviour are very similar to that of a person with Asperger’s Syndrome.
Some of the features that comply with this, include the fact that, Einstein was not able to properly speak by the time he was nine years old. He is said to have repeated certain sentences over and over again, till he was seven. His parents had actually presumed him to be mentally retarded. Language delays, are often quite common in children with Asperger’s Syndrome.
As an adult and a lecturer, Einstein was known to give several confusing lectures and was unable to make small talk when in social circles. Although he was later known to make several friends, and speak out with enthusiasm on politics, researchers today, believe signs of Asperger’s Syndrome were still apparent in his behaviour. His passion towards what he believed in, and an obsession to stand-up for his opinions, is a feature, strongly indicative of Asperger’s.
Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft and the wealthiest man in the world for well over a decade up until 2009, is a significant personality of modern times, highly speculated to show signs of Asperger’s Syndrome.
Although this has not been confirmed by Bill Gates himself on any occasion, several traits in his behaviour, which may be described as ‘quirky’ are actually highly suggestive of Asperger’s Syndrome. These include, the fact that his voice always has a flat tone, his habitual rocking motions, and his usual lack of hygiene and nice clothes.
An anecdote from his childhood in which he is known to have read from memory a lengthy passage from the Bible, without missing a single word, when he was just nine years old, is often cited when discussing the probability of Bill Gates having this high functioning type of Autism. It is suggestive of his ability to focus highly on something that he deems interesting, even as a child, which is seen in many children with Asperger’s Syndrome.
One might wonder what the relationship between a form of Autism such as Asperger’s Syndrome and being a genius and innovative thinker such as Albert Einstein and Bill Gates, could possibly be. The answer to that might be in the fact that, people with this condition, usually, see things starting with minute details and then on a global scale, while most people would focus on the bigger picture and then work backwards, in their train of thought. What is most apparent from the lives of these two personalities, is that having Asperger’s Syndrome, is in no way, a hinderance to one’s life and career.
Asperger's Depicted in Recent Pop-culture:
This is a movie starring Shah Rukh Khan which depicts the syndrome in an American society which puts him at a higher suspicion of being a terrorist. This is a dramatic example of how Asperger's might affect aperson with Asperger's in society.