Major research paper: An analysis of social competence portrayed by the autistic character in the television series The Good Doctor

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Title: Major research paper: An analysis of social competence portrayed by the autistic character in the television series The Good Doctor
Authors: Kluke, Shauna
Date: 2020
Abstract: There has been an increase in inclusivity of diverse characters in television and film, including those with disabilities, alternative sexual orientation, and physical health conditions. More specifically, there has been an increase of main characters with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in television and film, such as Dr. Shaun Murphy in The Good Doctor. ASD is characterized by deficits in social communication and in navigating interpersonal relationships. However, Dr. Shaun Murphy is portrayed as highly competent in building and maintaining relationships. Portraying him as socially competent can create false expectations within interpersonal interactions for individuals with ASD and their families. While it is a good step to see more diversity and inclusion in the media, questions have been raised by scholars and disability advocates about the accuracy of these representations. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to determine the accuracy of the representation of ASD in The Good Doctor and discuss implications for individuals with ASD and their caregivers and family members. Using the concept of social competence and the social competence scale developed by Merrell and Caldarella (2002), this study examined Dr. Murphy’s behaviours in the first season of the television series to explore the accuracy of the representation. The results of the study indicate that the depiction was not an accurate representation of the social competence of individuals with ASD. This inaccuracy is likely to result in larger implications and false expectations of individuals with ASD. Keywords: social competence, media representation, qualitative, case study, Autism Spectrum Disorder, The Good Doctor
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/41741
CollectionCommunication - Mémoires // Communication - Research Papers
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