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Temple Grandin: Understanding autism

Temple Grandin: Understanding autism 05:32

In the world of autism, few voices are more important than Temple Grandin's.

"She's one of those rare people with autism who can explain autism," says Lesley Stahl, who interviewed Grandin while reporting her recent 60 Minutes story "Apps for Autism." "She's a sort of interpreter of autism for the rest of us."

Grandin has a form of autism called Asperger's, which became apparent when she was a young child possessed by temper tantrums. Doctors told her mother that the situation was hopeless, but Grandin's parents never gave up. In this 60 Minutes Overtime interview, she tells Lesley that early and aggressive childhood intervention made all the difference for her. Her parents were committed to integrating her into family life, which meant learning things like table manners. "I was expected to sit at the table, learn how to eat properly," she tells Lesley.

Grandin went on to earn a PhD in animal science and become a leading expert in livestock handling, animal welfare, and animal behavior. In 2010, Time Magazine named her one of the world's most influential people, not only because of her scientific work, but also because of her contributions to the understanding of autism.

"What I've tried to do is combine both my personal experiences with scientific research," Grandin says. "I like to cross the divide between the personal world and the scientific world."

Lesley's favorite moment talking with Temple Grandin? At one point, she asks Grandin how she would feel about a cure for autism. Grandin's answer is simply amazing...

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