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Susan P. Koniak

Boston University Law School
I am writing a memoir about being born with a brain that works differently. I was able to "pass" as normal by compensating for my profound cognitive deficits without any special education, graduating from Yale Law School and becoming a professor, until an abrupt, early menopause when my ability to "pass" disintegrated. I then went on a journey to find out just how different my brain was, a secret I had kept all my life. I was now "out." I talked my way into U Cal Davis' MIND Institute one of the premier brain research in the country and found through advanced MRI imaging and cognitive testing that my brain was more different than I had imagined or find easy to believe. "Susan broke our color legend." These scientists did not have a blue dark enough to capture the bad quality of white matter that imaging revealed covered vast areas of my brain nor a red deep enough to capture the smaller but equally intense areas of dense brain matter, which but for the fact that these areas corresponded to my cognitive strengths, the researchers would have written off as too dense to be anything but chaotic.