A brief character sketch of Miss Helen Keller.

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mrshh eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Helen Keller became deaf and blind as a toddler due to an illness.  When she was a child in the late 1800s, there were very few opportunities for anyone who was deaf and blind.  Despite this, Helen's parents were determined that their daughter should receive an education.  They contacted many people until they found help through a teacher.  Miss Annie Sullivan came to be Helen's teacher when the girl was almost seven.  Miss Sullivan worked very hard, and eventually she taught Helen to communicate using the manual alphabet.  Helen called this new knowledge her "soul's sudden awakening."

Helen was able to use the manual alphabet to fully communicate for the first time in her life.  She used her new knowledge of communication to get an education.  Helen eventually went to school and then college.  She enjoyed writing, which led her to write her autobiography.  Helen also loved traveling.  She enjoyed visiting a variety of places, such as Niagara Falls, New York City, the Hudson River Valley, and Nova Scotia.  Helen had many different friends, who she loved to visit and spend time with.  Helen described the impact that her friends had on her life:

In a thousand ways they have turned my limitations into beautiful privileges, and enabled me to walk serene and happy in the shadow cast by my deprivation.

Read the study guide:
The Story of My Life

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