Imitation and the Social Mind

Autism and Typical Development

Edited by Sally J. Rogers and Justin H. G. Williams

May 25, 2006
ISBN 9781593853112
Price: $79.00
466 Pages
Size: 6⅛" x 9¼"
6 Color Figures

“A book that should grace the shelves of anyone interested in normal or abnormal human development, including of course researchers and clinicians involved in and experts in social learning and imitation....An extremely welcome addition to a rapidly growing literature on imitation....What makes this particular edited volume unique and important is the focus upon one disorder, , and the important insights that the imitative performance of children with offers to our understanding of typical development and the phenomenon of imitation in its own right. The individual contributions are consistently excellent and thought provoking. Nearly every chapter ends in a very useful concluding section that lists further questions that need to be addressed....Such an excellent volume will no doubt act as a catalyst in stimulating further vital research.”


“Editors Sally J. Rogers and Justin H. G. Williams have given the field what promises to be the definitive work in this very complex area.”


“The importance of imitation as a fundamental component of social communication, and of its failure in autism, cannot be overstated. This is why imitation is one of the most active research themes in social-cognitive neuroscience. The leading researchers in the field have contributed to this volume, which is vital reading for all those currently trying to understand the social mind in both typical and atypical development.”

—Uta Frith, PhD, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience and Department of Psychology, University College London, UK

“Truly an outstanding achievement! This unique volume brings together the world's foremost developmental psychologists, clinicians, and neuroscientists studying social cognition to provide critical, in-depth, and fresh perspectives on a topic that has captured the interest of philosophers and scientists for centuries. After reading the book, one appreciates more than ever how studies of typical and atypical populations mutually enhance our understanding of development. Scientists and practitioners alike will value this exceptional book.”

—Geraldine Dawson, PhD, Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Director, Duke Center for Autism and Brain Development, Duke University

“This outstanding volume brings together developmental and neurobiological research on the central role of imitation in the development of empathy, theory of mind, language, and social-affective reciprocity. The editors have brought together leading researchers whose work focuses on foundational aspects of imitation in typically and atypically developing children. The broad scope of this volume provides new theoretical insights on the neurocognitive mechanisms involved in imitation processes, highlighting the significance of the child’s interactions with others. A timely publication, the book is likely to stimulate renewed interest in imitation and generate investigations into novel therapeutic approaches for children with autism and related disorders. It should be required reading for anyone interested in basic and clinical perspectives on social development.”

—Helen Tager-Flusberg, PhD, Lab of Cognitive Neuroscience, Boston University School of Medicine