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Mental health on screen: A DSM-5 dissection of portrayals of autism spectrum disorders in film and TV

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Original languageEnglish
JournalPsychiatry Research
Early online date23 Aug 2017
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Aug 2017


Portrayals of characters with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) in films and TV series are subject to intense debate over whether such representations are accurate. Inaccurate portrayals are a concern as they may lead to increased stereotypes toward the condition. We investigate whether portrayals of characters with autism spectrum disorder in film and TV-series align with DSM-5 diagnostic criteria. Our data show that characters present a full range of characteristics described in the DSM-5. The meaning of this finding is discussed in relation to potential educational value of on screen portrayals and the notion of authenticity in representing the autistic experience.

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ID: 43186157