Art and the Other: The Mentally Different Other

Date and Time

Friday, March 22nd
7:00 PM


All Saints’ Episcopal Church
209 W. 27th St.
Austin, TX 78705


The Mentally Different OtherThere is arguably no group of persons in contemporary American society that suffers more from the stigma of “otherness” than the mentally different. Those who think and act differently from the mainstream are often seen as somehow “less” than normal. And yet, it is widely known that some of history’s greatest artists, writers, and thinkers would today be considered mentally or emotionally “different.” What if we considered mental difference not as a stigma but as a gift? And the mentally different as by no means less – but potentially “more” – than normal?

Indeed, what does normal, well-adjusted, psychological well-being look like? In this fifth and final installment of the “Art and the Other” series, we will explore this and other questions with Rupert Isaacson, who will present and discuss clips from The Horse Boy. Following the presentation from 7-8pm, we will continue the conversation from 8-9pm over food and drink with Rupert, Dr. Frank Richardson, and Angie Cross.

The Horse Boy is the title of a New York Times best selling book and a documentary feature film that follow the quest of Rupert and his wife to find healing for their autistic son Rowan. The film was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, and won the 2009 Feature Film Audience Award for the Lone Star States at South by Southwest.

Isaacson was born in London to a South African mother and a Zimbabwean father. Isaacson’s first book, The Healing Land: A Kalahari (Grove Press), was a 2004 New York Times Notable Book. His journalism and travel writing has appeared in the Daily Telegraph, Esquire, National Geographic, and Conde Nast Traveller.

Scholar and social theorist Frank Richardson, professor emeritus of Educational Psychology at the University of Texas, wrote “Re-Envisioning Psychology” and has served as president of the APA’s Division 24, Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology.

Angie Cross is a writer and pediatric Occupational Therapist with more than 20 years of experience as an Occupational Therapist working with children and adults with physical and mental disabilities.


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