Hacking agency: Apps, autism, and neurodiversity

Anne Teresa Demo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This essay examines the complex relationship between agency and technology. I compare autism apps developed by Samsung and Toca Boca and show that while app marketing retains a human-centered notion of agency, user–app interactions distribute agency through a constellation of human and nonhuman actors. The divergence between marketing and use, as well as critiques about agency and technology within disability studies, motivates my argument for hacking agency. Whether in computer or knowledge networks, hacking is a critical process that exploits information silos for particular ends. In this essay, I seek to broaden notions of rhetorical capacity and challenge narrow approaches to intentionality so as to facilitate the attribution of agency across the neurological spectrum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)277-300
Number of pages24
JournalQuarterly Journal of Speech
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 3 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education


Dive into the research topics of 'Hacking agency: Apps, autism, and neurodiversity'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this