Beautiful Minds: The Einstein Effect

A fascinating look at the relationship between genius and autism, with particular focus on the phenomenon of savants; a small group of enigmatic talents with extraordinary mental abilities.

Savants number less than 100 worldwide. Some can work out five-digit multiplication in their heads, or recite thousands of books by heart. Others can play a piano melody after hearing it only once. Over half of savants are autistic; others develop these super human talents only after brain injury.

With scientists now able to see billions of neurons at work in the brain, experts are now investigating whether it is in fact a defect that turns a person into a genius. Could the giant minds of the past – from Newton, to Mozart, to Albert Einstein have been autistic?

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