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Kirsty Young interviews developmental psychologist Professor Uta Frith.

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.

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 1 Mar 2013 09:00

Music Played

  • George Frideric Handel

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

    • Handel Concertos Pur Orgue.
    • Erato.
  • Engelbert Humperdinck

    Ein Mannlein steht im Walde from Hansel and Gretel

    • Hansel and Gretel.
    • EMI Classic.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Sonata for 4 hands in B flat major

    • Mozarts: Sonatas for Piano Duet.
    • Deutsche Grammophon.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Franz Schubert

      Schubert’s String Quartet No. 13 in A Minor

      • Schubert: String Quartets.
      • Berlin Classics.
  • Kurt Weill

    The Cannon Song (from the Threepenny Opera)

    • Threepenny Opera.
    • RCA.
  • Jonathan Harvey

    Mortuos Plango, Vivos Voco

    • Jonathan Harvey: Tombeau de Messiaen.
    • Sargasso.
  • Fred Frith

    Some Clouds Don’t have a Silver Lining

    • Cheap at Half the Price.
    • Rec Rec Music.
  • 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


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Uta Frith


  • Sun 24 Feb 2013 11:15
  • Fri 1 Mar 2013 09:00

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