Restricted Interests

I thought our discussion last week concerning “diving” vs “skimming” to be extremely interesting. For one, graduates students naturally delve very deep into one particular area, and we are expected to be experts. SeeĀ this website some interesting insight into our academic and career choices. I am completely on board with knowing a lot about particular topics (I know I used to be somewhat obsessed with LoTR). It is part of what we do, and it is expected and celebrated when people know “a lot” about a topic.

At the same time, knowing “too much” or being “too interested” in a topic can actually qualify as disordered. Specifically, I am referring to autism spectrum disorders. One of the common features of the disorder is “restricted/repetitive interests,” meaning being extremely preoccupied with objects or topics, even to the point of obsessing. What makes it disordered is that it usually results in social isolation, whether the person is perceived as odd or weird, or the person knows so much about something that they can’t talk about other things or don’t notice social cues.

We hit on it in class, but moderation is key.

Category(s): gedivtf13

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