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Going Blind: A Memoir
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Going Blind: A Memoir

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  32 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Mara Faulkner grew up in a family shaped by Irish ancestry, a close-to-the-bone existence in rural North Dakota, and the secret of her father's blindness--along with the silence and shame surrounding it. Dennis Faulkner had retinitis pigmentosa, a genetic disease that gradually blinded him and one that may blind many members of his family, including the author. Moving and ...more
Paperback, 227 pages
Published July 9th 2009 by State University of New York Press (first published 2009)
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RH Walters
Feb 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
A short deep book about Faulkner's memories of her father's blindness and growing up on a farm in North Dakota. Riffing on the many definitions and metaphors of blindness as springboards for her experiences and insights, Faulkner also writes about the immigrant legacy of the Irish famine, the ruin of native Mandan land and culture as a result of the Garrison dam, the history of German-Russians in the Dakotas (Lawrence Welk was one) and the state of the blind in the world today -- 50-70% are unem ...more
Aug 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
A view into a life marred by the physical disability of her father and the crippling emotional effects on his family. The rural life in the middle of nowhere in the Dakotas certainly also contributed to the sense that there was no escape for anyone. Luckily the author had an interior life and was able to go off to college.

The same things that hurt her family (the poverty, the blindness, the isolation) also contributed to a core of inner strength and gave her a depth she wouldn't have had without
Maggie Sievers
Apr 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Mara Faulkner has written a book that all people with disabilities, or who are blind, or who know people with blindness should read. Although she too is losing her sight to RP, this is not a book about self-pity. Rather it is a book for and about people who have limited sight, are blind, are going blind, or who know people who have limited sight. She weaves together how blindness, beyond the obvious personal limitations, that the individual and their families endure; how society has dealt with t ...more
Jul 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Author Mara Faulkner rachets up the memoir by asking and then investigating all her Why? questions: why did her dad seem bigoted toward the English? Why was he kind to blacks? Why were the Native Americans in her town skittish around whites? What did his blindness do for and against him in the discrimination department? Her scholarship is excellent, her conculsions forthright and evenhanded, her evaluation of her father, and of herself, are not sentimental, but deep.Well done.
Apr 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
One of the things I look for in a book is that it makes me look at the world differently (pun intended). This book moved in 20 different directions, using metaphors on blindness to enlarge my views of sightedness, visual deficits, disability, prejudice, and more.
Gwen Anderson
Aug 30, 2013 rated it it was ok
It read like a college history textbook, and I was hoping for more of her story with her family. It did offer good insights on interacting with people who are visually impaired.
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