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Speaking for OurselvesConversations on Life, Music, and Autism$
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Michael B. Bakan

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190855833

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190855833.001.0001

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Elizabeth J. “Ibby” Grace

Elizabeth J. “Ibby” Grace

Chapter:
(p.69) Chapter 5 Elizabeth J. “Ibby” Grace
Source:
Speaking for Ourselves
Author(s):

Michael B. Bakan

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190855833.003.0005

“I sort of ‘think in music’ in the same way Temple [Grandin] says she ‘thinks in pictures,’ ” states the autistic professor, social activist, and singer Elizabeth J. “Ibby” Grace. “Music was the nexus between my self and language for a long time. . . my communicative access,” she explains. “When I relax among myself there are not words going on in my head. There are intervals, tones . . . sometimes in order to think, I structure the thoughts into more like music, or they do themselves like that.” Thinking in music also enables Ibby to function socially “in ways I would have no chance of access to without it . . . . I think I can hear people’s own music sometimes, [which is] how I classify what their soul sounds like to me, [and] I can use this facility to predict if people will be liable to get along with one another.”

Keywords:   thinking in music, Artism Ensemble, autism, autism acceptance, Temple Grandin, alexithymia, Irish music, Persian [Iranian] music, ethnomusicology, high functioning/low functioning autism

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