What was the significance of books in Helen Keller's life?

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Helen Keller loved books. She took comfort in them and enjoyed reading. She sometimes read independently with raised print or Braille books. At times, others read to her by fingerspelling the words from the book into her hand. In her autobiographyThe Story of My Life , Helen explained...

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Helen Keller loved books. She took comfort in them and enjoyed reading. She sometimes read independently with raised print or Braille books. At times, others read to her by fingerspelling the words from the book into her hand. In her autobiography The Story of My Life, Helen explained "how much [she had] depended on books not only for pleasure and for the wisdom they bring to all who read, but also for that knowledge which comes to others through their eyes and their ears" (Chapter XXI). Helen enjoyed reading books over and over again. For this reason, she preferred to read on her own rather than to be read to. Few books were published in raised print, so Helen's reading choices were limited. Still, she thoroughly enjoyed what she read.

On Helen's first trip to Boston, she visited a large library at the school for the blind. She spent hours there, in awe of all the books in raised print. Finally, she was able to read on her own to her heart's content. As a child, Helen loved the novel Little Lord Fauntleroy. She read the book so many times that she had most of it memorized. Helen called the character of Little Lord Fauntleroy her "sweet and gentle companion."  

Literature served as a guide for Helen in that she learned from it. She learned an immense amount of information from all the books she read. Mostly, Helen viewed books as her friends. She explained this in her autobiography:

In a word, literature is my Utopia. Here I am not disfranchised. No barrier of the senses shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourse of my book-friends.

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