* Republic of Outsiders by Alissa Quart


I must say I was mostly bored throughout Republic of Outsiders: The Power of Amateurs, Dreamers and Rebels, which focuses on various groups (from the “neurodiverse”, individuals who would be diagnosed with mental illnesses but consider themselves simply different to  self-funding artists and urban farmers) that exist outside the mainstream and are able to make connections through the web. Of course it’s wonderful that people who would otherwise be isolated can connect to others via this medium, but the author seems often over-optimistic about such communities’ dark sides — and her  statistics are sometimes suspect (such as 85% of patients with mental illnesses reaching a cure before the era of pharmaceutical solutions vs. 30% after – what??) So somewhat of a yawn.

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