Perhaps the single greatest lesson readers take away from The Story of My Life is the value of perseverance. Without the ability to see or hear, Keller learned to function and interact within society in a meaningful way. Her drive to make a place for herself in the world started when she was very young. Even as a child, she found ways to help her mother around the house, rather than stay in a world that was dark, silent, and lonely. In fact, the terrible fits for which she is so well-known were the product of her extreme frustration at not being able to make herself understood and not having anyone else reach out and communicate with her. Once she overcame her obstacles and learned to communicate, she was driven to accomplish her high goals. She garnered many achievements, but she also gave credit for her accomplishments to her supporters. The concluding paragraph of The Story of My Life recognizes the invaluable contributions her friends made to her extraordinary success.
Once Keller learned to communicate and to read, she was eager to learn to speak. When she heard about a blind-deaf Norwegian girl who had learned to speak, Keller recalls, ‘‘Mrs. Lamson had scarcely finished telling me about this girl’s success before I was on fore with eagerness. I resolved that I, too, would learn to speak.’’ Once she started lessons in speech, she worked on it constantly. In chapter thirteen she remembers,...
(The entire section is 1189 words.)
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