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From: Paul Goldstein
Date: 17 Oct 2011
Time: 18:04:21 -0500
Remote Name: 220.127.116.11
Hi, Michelle, and thank you for your most interesting questions! To answer your first question, I really haven't been involved with the speech pathology [or logopedics] field here. I have at times discussed approaches to stuttering therapy with some of the clinicians in Norway who specialize in the field, and have written articles that have appeared in Norwegian (and other Scandinavian)stuttering publications and logopedics journals. Also I've found ways to apply some of my U.S. experiences in the field in my social services work, for example in working with mental challenges of children. I probably should look into the field further to see if I can find a place for myself within the Norwegian logopedics scene, especially with regard to fluency disorders. To answer your second question: I think that Norwegian society, compared to American society, is in general more accepting and more tolerant of all types of differences, disorders, and disabilities. The society here is much less competitive, and less oriented towards perfectionist standards than is the case in the U.S. Equality of all is a major operating principle within Norwegian society; it is a principle that I'm personally very comfortable with, more so than I was with the competition-driven society of the U.S. When people are regarded as equal, this leads to a greater respect and acceptance of those who are "different" in some significant way.