Aug
16
2011

HELEN KELLER AND ANNE SULLIVAN EDUCATING THE HANDICAPPED

Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan were an unlikely pair.  Helen was blind, deaf and dumb student, frustrated and spoiled by her over-indulgent parents.  Anne, on the other hand, was her 20-year old teacher, a blind orphan whose sight had been partially restored through surgery.  Together they achieved one of the most remarkable examples of educating a severely handicapped person.

Stricken by an illness at 19 months, Helen Keller was isolated in a world of darkness and silence.  Yet, with unswerving dedication, strength of will and a unique combination of instructional methods, Miss Sullivan was able to make her six-year-old student understand the meaning of language.  At first they communicated by spelling words with their fingers in the palms of each other’s hands.  Eventually, Miss Keller mastered speech and learned to write.  The recounting of their remarkable story, as documented by Miss Sullivan, and later by Miss Keller herself, gave hope to thousands of handicapped people the world over.

The extraordinary accomplishments of Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan helped improve conditions for the deaf and blind and proved that the human mind and spirit can overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles.  Their remarkable achievement was the subject of the play, and later the movie, entitled “The Miracle Worker”.

First day of issue: June 27, 1980

First day city: Tuscumbia, Alabama, birthplace of Helen Keller

Stamp designer: Paul Calle, Stamford, Connecticut

“It is true that Helen Keller is ‘handicapped’_as, indeed, who is not? But that which distinguishes her is not her handicap but the extent which she has overcome it, and even profited by it.  She calls for sympathy and understanding, but not for pity.  No one can know her or hear her without feeling admiration and gratitude.” from the Introduction of Helen Keller’s The Story of My Life by Ralph Barton Perry.

 

 

 

 

Nicetas

About the Author: Nicetas Juanillo

Writing makes me happy away from home. My website is where you can find my tips about lifestyle, health and other issues. I also have books on my site that you can read to know more

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