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Language & Neurodiversity


The University of Michigan Department of Linguistics Initiative on Language, Disability and Neurodiversity was made possible by a generous gift through the Larry Motola Linguistics Fund, established to support the development of curriculum projects and research related to cognitive process and conditions, and their interaction with language and neurodiversity.

One component of this initiative is an ongoing seminar series that started in Fall of 2022. Events in this series are listed below.


Language in a Neurodiverse World

October 14, 2022

M. Remi Yergeau (Associate Professor of Digital Studies and English at the University of Michigan) and Stephanie L. Kerschbaum (Associate Professor of English and Director of the Program in Writing and Rhetoric at the University of Washington). Drs. Yergeau and Kerschbaum discuss issues at the intersection of neurodiversity and language and participate in a Q & A with moderators and attendees. Explore the event details and watch the presentation here.

Deej Film Screening

November 17, 2022

Deej, directed by Robert Rooy, a documentary about autism and inclusion. Abandoned by his birth parents, DJ Savarese finds a loving family which helps him learn to communicate. As he makes his way through high school and dreams of college, he advocates on behalf of non-speaking autistic people. Learn more about Deej and watch on the documentary's website.

Aphasia From All Sides: Experiencing, Treating, Caring

December 16, 2022

The panel features participants who have the lived experience of aphasia as well as individuals who partner in care with people experiencing aphasia, clinicians who treat people with aphasia, and academics who research aphasia. Watch the discussion here.