Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768ffcd9cc-2bgxn Total loading time: 0.374 Render date: 2022-12-01T17:34:35.220Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "displayNetworkTab": true, "displayNetworkMapGraph": false, "useSa": true } hasContentIssue true

Did Alan Turing have Asperger's syndrome?

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  13 June 2014

Henry O'Connell
Affiliation:
Mercer's Institute for Research on Ageing, St. James's Hospital, Dublin 8, Ireland
Michael Fitzgerald
Affiliation:
Ballyfermot Child Guidance Clinic, Ballyfermot Road, Ballyfermot, Dublin 10, Ireland

Extract

Alan Turing was born in Paddington, London on June 23, 1912 . His family were middle-class and well-off. He was fascinated with science from an early age and showed precocious talent, especially in the areas of chemistry and mathematics. He attended Sherbourne Public School and then King's College, Cambridge where he studied mathematics. His areas of interest at Cambridge were probability theory and mathematical logic. It was at Cambridge that he first conceptualised the Universal Turing Machine, an idea that was to evolve into the modern theory of computing. He has been referred to as the father of the computer.

He worked on a cipher machine at Princeton University between 1936 and 1938. He worked for the British Government during World War II with the Government Code and Cipher School at Bletchley Park. He was ultimately the key player in deciphering the German 'Enigma' code used by its submarines during the war. After the war he took up a post in Manchester University where he continued to work on ideas of artificial intelligence. He was arrested and charged for homosexual activity in 1952 and underwent a course of oestrogen therapy. He committed suicide in 1954.

He was regarded as being socially aloof and eccentric by colleagues and friends. He was interested in mathematics, chemistry and logic from an early age, to the exclusion of other activities. This paper attempts to establish whether he fulfilled the criteria for Asperger's syndrome.

Type
Historical
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2000

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

1.Hodges, A. Alan Turing the enigma. London: Vintage, 1992.Google Scholar
2.Gillberg, C. Clinical and neurobiological aspects in six family studies of Asperger's syndrome. In: Frith, U. (Ed) Autism and Asperger's Syndrome. Cambridge: University Press, 1991.Google ScholarPubMed
3.ICD 10 Classification of Mental and Behavioural Disorders. WHO, Geneva, 1992.Google ScholarPubMed
4.American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic Criteria for DSM-IV. Washington DC: APA, 1994.Google ScholarPubMed
5
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Did Alan Turing have Asperger's syndrome?
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Did Alan Turing have Asperger's syndrome?
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Did Alan Turing have Asperger's syndrome?
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *