THE HAND OF THE WORLD: Helen Keller on Social Blindness

[From Out of the Dark: Essays, Letters, and Addresses on Physical and Social Vision (1913). This text has been lightly edited for apparent scanning errors and hyperlinked by me] As I write this, I am sitting in a pleasant house, in a sunny, wide-windowed study filled with plants and flowers. Here I sit, warmly clad, secure against want, sure that… Read more

Helen & Friends @ Zuccotti Park: Occupy Wall Street 5-year anniversary

“ASK ME WHAT I THINK OF CAPITALISM” That was the sign I made and carried with me to Occupy Wall Street Sunday. We finally made it to Zuccotti Park, after the fact from the standpoint of many who think the movement of the physical place is dead. But it was exhilarating for me and my companions nonetheless. Besides me and… Read more

Helen Keller’s Vaudeville Q & A

  What is Miss Keller’s age? There is no age on the vaudeville stage.   Does Miss Keller think of marriage? Yes. Are you proposing to me?   Does talking tire you? Did you ever hear of a woman who tired of talking?   Do you close your eyes when you sleep? I guess I do, but I never stayed… Read more

The Play World: Helen Keller Writes About Vaudeville

[“The Play World” is Chapter 13 of Midstream: My Later Life, 1929, in which Keller describes her experience of vaudeville and the circumstances that led her to it. I lightly edited and hyperlinked it from a scan of the original.] THE picture was not a financial success. My sense of pride mutinies against my confession; but we are the kind… Read more

The Sea Spells, Helen Keller’s Favorite Books

“Books have been my most intimate companions,” wrote Helen Keller in a letter to a suitor in 1922. There can be little doubt that Helen derived much pleasure from the solitary communion of reading. That much of this pleasure was escapist in the extreme, she freely admits, “More than at any other time, when I hold a beloved book in… Read more

Disability Pride Parades Matter

Disability Pride Parades celebrate difference, explode stigma and combat shame!   If you did not know that Disability Pride Month came to a close yesterday, you would be forgiven as, in NYC at least, it is only a year old. Mayor de Blasio declared July to be Disability Pride Month last year in honor of the 25th anniversary of the… Read more