The Story of My Life by Helen Keller - first published in book form in 1903, is Helen Keller's autobiography detailing her early life, particularly her experiences with Anne Sullivan. Portions of it were adapted by William Gibson for a 1957 Playhouse 90 production, a 1959 Broadway play, a 1962 Hollywood feature film, and the Indian film Black. The book is dedicated to inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who was one of her teachers and an advocate for the deaf.
When she was 19 months old, Helen Keller (1880-1968) suffered a severe illness that left her blind and deaf. Not long after, she also became mute. Her tenacious struggle to overcome these handicaps-with the help of her inspired teacher, Anne Sullivan-is one of the great stories of human courage and dedication. In this classic autobiography, first published in 1903, Miss Keller recounts the first 22 years of her life, including the magical moment at the water pump when, recognizing the connection between the word "water" and the cold liquid flowing over her hand, she realized that objects had names. Subsequent experiences were equally noteworthy: her joy at eventually learning to speak, her friendships with Oliver Wendell Holmes, Edward Everett Hale and other notables, her education at Radcliffe (from which she graduated cum laude), and-underlying all-her extraordinary relationship with Miss Sullivan, who showed a remarkable genius for communicating with her eager and quick-to-learn pupil.
Helen Keller began to write The Story of My Life in 1902, while she was still a student at Radcliffe College. It was published in the Ladies' Home Journal that same year as a series of installments. The following year, it was published by Doubleday, Page & Co. as a book. The book was well received.
Blind and deaf since infancy, American memoirist and lecturer Helen Adams Keller learned to read, to write, and to speak from her teacher Anne Sullivan, graduated from Radcliffe in 1904, and lectured widely on behalf of sightless people; her books include Out of the Dark (1913).
Conditions bound not Keller. Scarlet fever rendered her deaf and blind at 19 months; she in several languages and as a student wrote The Story of My Life . In this age, few women then attended college, and people often relegated the disabled to the background and spoke of the disabled only in hushed tones, when she so remarkably accomplished. Nevertheless, alongside many other impressive achievements, Keller authored 13 books, wrote countless articles, and devoted her life to social reform. An active and effective suffragist, pacifist, and socialist (the latter association earned her a file of Federal Bureau of Investigation), she lectured on behalf of disabled people everywhere. She also helped to start several foundations that continue to improve the lives of the deaf and blind around the world.