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Uta Frith

Duration:
45 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 24 February 2013

Professor Uta Frith, developmental psychologist, is interviewed by Kirsty Young for Desert Island Discs.

Uta Frith's groundbreaking work on autism has revolutionized our understanding of the condition; overturning the traditional, long-held belief that the root of the problems are social & emotional; discovering instead that autism is the result of physical differences in the brain.

She arrived in Britain from Germany in the early 60s for a two-week course in English. Half a century later, and groaning under the weight of myriad fellowships and awards, with an honorary DBE to her name, she is one of the grand dames of British science.

In retirement she continues to mentor and encourage fellow women scientists, not least in her networking group "science&shopping" - an aim being to have some fun.

She says her metaphor for the brain "is that of a garden that is full of the most interesting, different things ... that have to be cultivated and constantly checked."

Producer: Alison Hughes.

Music Played

10 items
  • Image for George Frideric Handel

    George Frideric Handel Organ Concerto Opus 7 No 1 in B flat major – Bouree Allegro

    Handel Concertos Pur Orgue, Erato

  • Image for Engelbert Humperdinck

    Engelbert Humperdinck Ein Mannlein steht im Walde from Hansel and Gretel

    Hansel and Gretel, EMI Classic

  • Image for Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Sonata for 4 hands in B flat major

    Mozarts: Sonatas for Piano Duet, Deutsche Grammophon

  • Image for Franz Schubert

    Franz Schubert Schubert’s String Quartet No. 13 in A Minor

    Schubert: String Quartets, Berlin Classics

  • Image for Kurt Weill

    Kurt Weill The Cannon Song (from the Threepenny Opera)

    Threepenny Opera, RCA

  • Image for Jonathan Harvey

    Jonathan Harvey Mortuos Plango, Vivos Voco

    Jonathan Harvey: Tombeau de Messiaen, Sargasso

  • Image for Fred Frith

    Fred Frith Some Clouds Don’t have a Silver Lining

    Cheap at Half the Price, Rec Rec Music

  • Image for Richard Strauss

    Richard Strauss Der Rosenkavalier – Waltzes

    Famous Waltzes, Teldec

  • Book Choice

    • A Book of Hours from Sir John Soane's Museum

  • Luxury Choice

    • Her Dolls House

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