The World I Live In

( 13 )

Overview

Out of print for nearly a century, The World I Live In is Helen Keller's most personal and intellectually adventurous work -- one that transforms our appreciation of her extraordinary achievements. Here this preternaturally gifted deaf and blind young woman closely describes her sensations and the workings of her imagination, while making the provocative argument that the whole spectrum of the senses lies open to her through the medium of language. Standing in the line of Emerson and Thoreau, The World I Live In ...
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The World I Live In

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Overview

Out of print for nearly a century, The World I Live In is Helen Keller's most personal and intellectually adventurous work -- one that transforms our appreciation of her extraordinary achievements. Here this preternaturally gifted deaf and blind young woman closely describes her sensations and the workings of her imagination, while making the provocative argument that the whole spectrum of the senses lies open to her through the medium of language. Standing in the line of Emerson and Thoreau, The World I Live In is a profoundly suggestive exercise in self-invention, and a true, rediscovered classic of American literature. This new edition of The World I Live In also includes Helen Keller's early essay "Optimism," as well as her first published work, "My Story," written when she was twelve.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Roger Shattuck’s striking new edition of The World I Live In, a sparkling work too long obscured, renews Helen Keller for all generations—for the steadfast admirers of her art, and particularly for readers not yet acquainted with the sightless genius who taught the world the majesty of her insight. The World I Live In brings us intimately close, in her own valiant words, to the mind of a woman for whom language was life."
— Cynthia Ozick

"While Helen Keller is better known for The Story of My Life, her later book, The World I Live In, is a warmer, more intimate and more beautiful work, one in which we encounter Helen Keller’s remarkable imagination, her originality, and her power as a literary artist. She comes alive here, vividly and idiosyncratically, more than in any other of her writings."
— Oliver Sacks

"An astounding account, enhanced further by Roger Shattuck’s excellent introduction in which he explores the implications of her experience."
The Observer

"An affirmation of the fact that real miracles are the product of human endeavour and inspiration"
Times Educational Supplement (London)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781590170670
  • Publisher: New York Review Books
  • Publication date: 11/10/2003
  • Series: New York Review Books Classics Series
  • Pages: 182
  • Sales rank: 784,030
  • Product dimensions: 5.01 (w) x 7.97 (h) x 0.49 (d)

Meet the Author

Helen Keller was born in Tuscumbia, Alabama. At nineteen months, she suffered from a mysterious illness, perhaps scarlet fever, that left her deaf and blind. When Helen was five, Anne Sullivan was engaged as her teacher. Their relationship and the legendary strides made as a result of it, particularly Helen’s acquisition of language, are the subject of The Story of My Life. A devoted member of the Socialist Party and a tireless advocate for the blind, Helen spent her adult life fundraising and lecturing all over the world. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1964.

Roger Shattuck (1923–2005) was an American writer and scholar of French culture. He taught at Harvard, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Virginia, and Boston University, where he was named University Professor. His books include Forbidden Knowledge: From Prometheus to Pornography.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: "A World of Words" vii
Preface 7
1 The Seeing Hand 9
2 The Hands of Others 16
3 The Hand of the Race 22
4 The Power of Touch 28
5 The Finer Vibrations 36
6 Smell, the Fallen Angel 43
7 Relative Values of the Senses 52
8 The Five-sensed World 56
9 Inward Visions 61
10 Analogies in Sense Perception 67
11 Before the Soul Dawn 72
12 The Larger Sanctions 77
13 The Dream World 85
14 Dreams and Reality 97
15 A Waking Dream 103
A Chant of Darkness 113
Optimism: An Essay
Part I Optimism Within 127
Part II Optimism Without 134
Part III The Practice of Optimism 148
My Story 161
Notes and Sources 181
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 14 of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 10, 2013

    I read ms spit fire too it ws awesome and i liked it alot so get ms spitt fire in stead of this boring book if you want a good book

    Awesome

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 12, 2012

    Its ok

    Nice book

    2 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2012

    You go girl

    I read a book called miss spitfire it was amazing i like that in the back of the book they have a list of books that r simular though u definatly need paitients to finish this book

    1 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2014

    Dont know

    Is it worth $4.00

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2014

    I am a high school sophomore and I had to read this book fo

    I am a high school sophomore and I had to read this book for a research project. This book was a great read, I am amazed on how well Helen Keller writes for being deaf and blind, she is such an inspirational writer. I thought it was interesting to learn how Helen Keller learned to overcome her disabilities and was able to life a successful life. She was able to identify sound through her vibrations that she felt, and identify places she was at through her senses and how imagination has a big part of your life when you don’t have the ability to see or hear, which was very interesting to learn about as well. Reading this book made me get a bigger understanding on the little things in life like how it is to speak, to think, and to be. I felt that she also made me understand not only is the world we live in beautiful but the world in our mind is beautiful as well. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning a few things about Helen Keller, it was a great book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2014

    I am a high school sophomore and I had to read this book for a r

    I am a high school sophomore and I had to read this book for a research project. This book was a great read, I am amazed on how well Helen Keller writes for being deaf and blind, she is such an inspirational writer. I thought it was interesting to learn how Helen Keller learned to overcome her disabilities and was able to life a successful life. She was able to identify sound through her vibrations that she felt, and identify places she was at through her senses and how imagination has a big part of your life when you don’t have the ability to see or hear, which was very interesting to learn about as well. I felt that I was put in her shoes while reading this book, which made me understand everything she went through in her life and realize why she is recognized until this day. Reading this book made me get a bigger understanding on the little things in life like how important it is to speak, to think, and to be. I felt that she also made me understand not only is the world we live in beautiful but the world in our mind is beautiful as well. I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in learning a few things about Helen Keller, it was a great book. Also, since I read this book for a research project, I thought this book came in good use for helping me answer my questions.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2011

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    Posted January 22, 2012

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    Posted November 25, 2011

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    Posted January 14, 2010

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    Posted April 2, 2011

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    Posted September 16, 2010

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    Posted May 17, 2010

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 14 of 13 Customer Reviews

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