Monday, October 17, 2011

Nonfiction Monday

Nonfiction Monday is hosted today by Simply Science.

My selection is "Helen Keller: her life in pictures" written by George Sullivan.

Anyone who is familiar with Helen Keller knows she lost her hearing before she was two years old and eventually learned to communicate at the age of seven as a result of her lessons with Anne Sullivan, her teacher.  It is a remarkable story that has appeared on stage and screen.  But Helen Keller's life was far more than the story of how she overcame her disabilities.

Sullivan highlights Helen's accomplishments, which were extensive.  Following her graduation from Radcliffe college in 1900, Helen led a public life.  She wrote several books, appeared on the stage, starred in a film, lectured, and traveled extensively, visiting thirty-nine countries on six continents.  She served her country as a goodwill ambassador and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award, by President Lyndon Johnson in 1964.   She raised millions of dollars to aid the blind.  She was an activist for a broad range of issues -- equality for the disabled, the right of workers to organize, and women's suffrage.

 Sullivan's choice of photographs give the reader a powerful sense of the scope and impact of Helen's life.  The book concludes with a chronology, bibliography, a list for further reading, other sources of information,  and an index.  The book also features a link to "Ask Keller" where readers can make inquiries about Helen Keller's life and receive a response in a monthly column by Keller Johnson Thompson, Helen's great-grandniece.  The column is found at Helen Keller Kids Museum Online.

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