Connecting The Dots Between Child Prodigies and Autism

The Takeaway

We often hear the expression "child prodigy" uttered in the same sentence as Mozart. As one of the first recognized child prodigies, he started playing music when he was 2-years-old, published his first piece by 5, and had composed numerous symphonies by the time he was 12.

Today, the child prodigy pool has expanded beyond music to encompass kids with gifts in painting, cooking, coding, the game of chess—the list goes on. And while their talents may be awe-inspiring, it has also been a confounding phenomena.  

Professor of psychology Joanne Ruthsatz and her daughter, journalist Kimberly Stephens, co-authored a new book, "The Prodigy's Cousin: The Family Link Between Autism and Extraordinary Talent." Here, they discuss the commonalities shared and link between autism and child prodigies.