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The Story of My Life with Her Letters (1887-1901) & a Supplementary Account of Her Education Including Passages from the Reports & Letters of Her Teacher Anne Mansfield Sullivan by John Albert Macy
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The Story of My Life with Her Letters (1887-1901) & a Supplementary Account of Her Education Including Passages from the Reports & Letters of Her Teacher Anne Mansfield Sullivan by John Albert Macy

3.67 of 5 stars 3.67  ·  rating details  ·  99 ratings  ·  20 reviews
Paperback, 264 pages
Published November 3rd 2006 by Academic Industries, Inc. (first published 1902)
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Jane
I'm sure that everyone has heard the story of Helen Keller, but this is a truly fascinating view into her life, and I don't throw around the word fascinating lightly. Helen herself gives a memoir of her life, including what she can remember from before her illness, and continuing up through her college and adult years. There are then several pages of letters, which in my edition were plain text but I have looked up the images online to see her handwriting.

However, the best part of this book is
...more
Valerie
I'm pretty sure this is the edition I read, although the binding is different.

Though most people have read this book at some time in their lives, unless they get hold of an edition that explicitly explains why it was written, they won't probably realize that it was written to help finance her college education.

Properly, it ought to be bound with her other autobiographical works from later periods, to give a better feel for a long-lived woman with a complex (and often controversial--her works we
...more
Mike
Very interesting book. Today we focus on Helen Keller's disabilities and ignore the person. Contrary to popular conception she wasn't some sort of simpleton, but highly intelligent and opinionated. She was well spoken (yes she learned to speak), could write very well, and fluent in several languages. We also overlook the contribution her teacher made to education and how devoted Miss Sullivan was to Helen. Both were remarkable women.

The book is in three parts: Her autobiography, a collection of
...more
Sue
I have never really been able to comprehend how Helen Keller, blind and deaf, was able to learn and become so articulate she could write books. I decided to read about her life and I am still amazed at what she was able to accomplish. Along with English she also learned French, German, Greek and Latin. She writes beautifully and uses very colorful descriptions and then you realize she is still in a dark, silent world. Her story is so inspiring and uplifting though like all of us she had moments ...more
Mei
This book needs to be broken into 3 parts, the first being Helen Keller's account of her life up until college and her letters, the second being Anne Sullivan's letters regarding Helen's early education and the third being a rather lengthy editorial of an external view (John Macy's) of Helen and parts of her education, finally dwelling on a particular issue that occurred during her school years ("The Frost King", which gives nothing away, but should give enough detail to anyone who has read the ...more
Christina
This book includes The Story of My Life, followed by a collection of letters written by Helen Keller, then a collection of reports and letters written by Helen's teacher, Anne Sullivan. I found Anne's letters by far the most interesting part of the book. The letters and autobiography written by Helen herself give interesting insights into her mind, and she has accomplished amazing things, but Anne is able to give more insight into Helen's education and how she was able to accomplish amazing thin ...more
Whymsy Likes Books
A remarkable true story!

Helen Keller’s writing has a very poetic and introspective quality to it. I really enjoyed hearing her voice. This story puts flesh and blood to a hero of almost mythical proportions. Her determination in the face of physical opposition was amazing and her humbleness in admitting trials and the occasional defeat honest. She has no sense of entitlement only gratitude, which is truly incredible to see.

Reading this book puts into sharp relief what Miss Sullivan must have gi
...more
Jessica Barkl
I finished this book awhile ago when I was playing Annie Sullivan in THE MIRACLE WORKER. It was a lovely read. I think that we so often get Helen Keller's perspective, but there were some amazing letters that Anne Sullivan sent to her benefactress in Cape Cod that gave a very different perspective on Helen and how she worked with her. I openly laughed several times in the recounting of Helen's discoveries. One in particular still stands out, I'll paraphrase...Helen was reading some Grimm's Fairy ...more
Orna
Incredible. This is one of my favorite reads. It is an enjoyable read, but it also gives me so much food for thought! I had to rethink all my previous assumptions about the human mind and what is innate/ what is learned. It seriously challenged a lot of arguments psychologists make for nature vs. nurture, and whether or not humans are born w/ certain natural instincts and behaviors.

I would have to agree that Anne Sullivan's letters are one of the best parts of this book. Although Helen's writing
...more
Jacob De
I loved it. This is perhaps my favorite book. She lived the classical education. She is a great example to me.
Hannah
The letters from Anne Sullivan were the most interesting part. That said, it's pretty amazing that Helen was able to accomplish all that she was while living deaf and blind. It's a good book to read if you want to understand that in general children are naughty because they are frustrated with their inability to communicate and/or not understanding choices and accountability. Without basic freedom that comes from that knowledge, one can feel insecure. Helen's behavior did a 180 once she was made ...more
Suzanne
The life of Helen Keller was amazing. The things that she was able to accomplish in her life was phenomenal despite all the obstacles she faced. The reason I lowered the star score was because it repeated the same instance multiple times. Granted they were from different view points, but it still drug the storyline out.
Julia
Aug 16, 2009 Julia rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone who likes autobiographies and/or who is interested in Helen Keller and people like her
Recommended to Julia by: I selected it off the shelf of Country Inns and Suites Read It a
This book was very interesting, especially at the beginning. Near the end, she started talking more about the people in her life, and I found that less interesting than what it's like to neither see nor hear and how she makes up for that. Plus, with the letters at the end and discussion of them, I felt like she was a specimen rather than a person. She seems to have had many interesting and varied experiences, leading me to believe that her family was rich, even though she never said so.
Beth
Ok, so the book was written in the early 1900's. It was a bit slow to get through. I was facinated with Helen Keller's life, I never knew how much she accomplished. Quite amazing, she actually went to college, and became a national speaker (even though I'm wondering how well she could actually verbally speak!)
Joan
By far the best section was the part when Annie Sullivan described her methods, which were brilliant, and sadly remained under-used today. All children should be educated by her precepts, and our level of literacy and creativity would be much improved.
Mike Jensen
A rare story of frustration and final victory. May I never have to overcome so much. I'm glad that I finally got around to reading it. You should read it too.
Dawn
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Starlak
No doubt that Helen Keller and Annie Sullivan where amazing women... this book was not. Too flowery IMHO to be "real".
Amanda Kay
I did not read the reprint, I read the one published in the 1910's! Belonged to my Great Aunt.
Brenda Nutter
An amazing life. One from which we can all learn.
Carl
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Apr 27, 2015
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Helen Keller would not be bound by conditions. Rendered deaf and blind at 19 months by scarlet fever, she learned to read (in several languages) and even speak, eventually graduating with honors from Radcliffe College in 1904, where as a student she wrote The Story of My Life. That she accomplished all of this in an age when few women attended college and the disabled were often relegated to the b ...more
More about Helen Keller...
The Story of My Life The World I Live In The Miracle Worker: Selected Works of Helen Keller Light in my Darkness Teacher: Anne Sullivan Macy

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“I began my studies with eagerness. Before me I saw a new world opening in beauty and light, and I felt within me the capacity to know all things. In the wonderland of Mind I should be as free as another [with sight and hearing]. Its people, scenery, manners, joys, and tragedies should be living tangible interpreters of the real world. The lecture halls seemed filled with the spirit of the great and wise, and I thought the professors were the embodiment of wisdom... But I soon discovered that college was not quite the romantic lyceum I had imagined. Many of the dreams that had delighted my young inexperience became beautifully less and "faded into the light of common day." Gradually I began to find that there were disadvantages in going to college. The one I felt and still feel most is lack of time. I used to have time to think, to reflect, my mind and I. We would sit together of an evening and listen to the inner melodies of the spirit, which one hears only in leisure moments when the words of some loved poet touch a deep, sweet chord in the soul that until then had been silent. But in college there is no time to commune with one's thoughts. One goes to college to learn, it seems, not to think. When one enters the portals of learning, one leaves the dearest pleasures – solitude, books and imagination – outside with the whispering pines. I suppose I ought to find some comfort in the thought that I am laying up treasures for future enjoyment, but I am improvident enough to prefer present joy to hoarding riches against a rainy day.” 78 likes
“There are times when I long to sweep away half the things I am expected to learn; for the overtaxed mind cannot enjoy the treasure it has secured at the greatest cost. ... When one reads hurriedly and nervously, having in mind written tests and examinations, one's brain becomes encumbered with a lot of bric-a-brac for which there seems to be little use. At the present time my mind is so full of heterogeneous matter that I almost despair of ever being able to put it in order. Whenever I enter the region of my mind I feel like the proverbial bull in the china shop. A thousand odds and ends of knowledge come crashing about my head like hailstones, and when I try to escape them, theme goblins and college nixies of all sorts pursue me, until I wish – oh, may I be forgiven the wicked wish! – that I might smash the idols I came to worship.” 32 likes
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