The Story of My Life by Helen Keller

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What is a summary of Helen Keller's The Story of My Life?

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The Story of my Life by Helen Keller is an autobiography that recounts Helen’s experiences as she adjusts to the world as a blind and deaf person. Helen begins the story by describing her earliest memories of sights and sounds and her memory of contracting the illness that resulted in her deafness and blindness. Helen learned sign language after her illness, but she describes the isolation she felt from the world around her and the frustration she felt while trying to learn.

At the age of six, Helen’s life changes drastically when she is referred to a teacher who has had tremendous success...

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The Story of My Life is Hellen Keller's autobiography. Stricken with illness early in life that left her blind and deaf, Keller claims to tell her story as part of an attempt to validate her experiences with her disability, and to make the disabled subject more intelligible to the public.

The book is split into three parts. The first part recalls Keller's initial despair, as she tried to navigate life and obtain an education without readily available tools to make blind people's everyday experience easier. She finds solace in reading and writing, learning to use language as her primary tool.

Part two is composed of various letters written to Keller's friends and family. In them, she reveals insecurities about her proficiency at verbal expression, preferring the written form after finding it difficult to get feedback with which she could measure her progress with spoken language. The section is organized such that in each successive letter, Keller's written proficiency is improved. It is as much an autobiographical work as a demonstration of the fruits of her industriousness.

The third and final part of the book reconstructs Keller's narrative using the observations of Keller's teacher, Anne Sullivan, who stayed alongside her for almost half a century. Sullivan gives an account of Anne's prodigious intellect and drive, tracing her improvement from the early days, in which she picked up on new vocabulary at an exponential rate, through her later adoption of the Braille system and acceptance into Radcliffe College at Harvard.