hey, savantism anon again, and im not sure we're on the same page of definition of savantism since you say that it's just considered "intelligence" or "normal" in allistics. I mean savantism in being a hyperpolyglot (speaking 20 or more languages), i mean Albert Einstein, I mean being able to play any instrument in the world effortlessly, I mean being able to play a Vivaldi piece from memory after hearing it once or twice only. Thats abnormal. But apart from that, what u said makes sense! Thanks
Right. Maybe I didn’t word it well. Uhm. Like, let’s say you’re good with languages. You know those 26 languages. You didn’t really have to work at them to learn them. They’re just… simple for you. As an autistic, we would call you an autistic savant.
But what do we call it if you are not developmentally disabled and you just… know 26 languages?
What makes a savant, well, a savant, is that they have a very high intelligence in a very specific area, but also that they have a developmental disability of some sort that impairs other areas of intelligence. With an autistic savant, this usually means a lower intelligence with regards to socialization, emotion, speech, etc. The things we are pathologized for.
The point of being a savant is that it is exceptionally heightened intelligence where only impaired intelligence is expected. Which brings us back to the question.
But what do we call it if you are not developmental disabled and you just… know 26 languages?
If you know those languages and you are otherwise average - which is to say you are within the expected range of intelligence for the average person of your age in all other areas - then you are not developmentally disabled and therefore you are not a savant.
People that have extremely high intelligence like this are not called savants. And like, we recognize that these people are really good at what they do and that it isn’t book smarts, that they just naturally do this thing. But we tend to call this natural talent, or even genius where savant implies exception in disability.
All this is based on the psychological definition of what it means to be a savant. Which is to say, savant is still pathologizing intelligence. It is still part of a developmental disability. It is still open to the same ableism as any other disability.
More importantly, that same type of natural, un-learned, hyper-intelligence occurs in the non-developmentally disabled population and we don’t pathologize it. Like, yeah, it’s on the outside range of “normal” but it is treated as “gifted” and “genius” instead of disabled.
Hopefully I worded better this time?