The part of the story that is well known is that, at the age of twenty and freshly graduated from the Perkins Institute for the Blind in Boston, Annie Sullivan traveled to Tuscumbia, Alabama to become the teacher to the blind wild child Helen Keller. Through persistence, patience, and tough love Sullivan finally broke through to where Keller connected words and objects and entered the realm of language. Inseparable until death, anticapitalist and antiwar Sullivan and self-identified socialist Keller worked tirelessly to raise awareness about the issues facing blind people. Yet, the image and legacy of Keller greatly overshadows that of her teacher. Despite Keller’s attempt to direct attention to Sullivan in her book, Teacher, Sullivan’s pre-Keller life remains largely shrouded… | more |
Denise Bergman, Seeing Annie Sullivan (San Diego: Cedar Hill Books, 2005), 100 pages, paperback, $15.00.