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Helen Keller: A Medical Marvel or Evidence of the I-Function? Essay

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Helen Keller: A Medical Marvel or Evidence of the I-Function?


Everyone cried a little inside when Helen Keller, history's notorious deaf-blind-mute uttered that magic word 'wa' at the end of the scientifically baffling classic true story. Her ability to overcome the limitations caused by her sensory disabilities not only brought hope for many like cases, but also raised radical scientific questions as to the depth of the brain's ability.

For those who are not familiar with the story of Helen Keller or the play 'The Miracle Worker', it recalls the life of a girl born in 1880 who falls tragically ill at the young age of two years old, consequently losing her ability to hear, speak, and see. Helen's frustration grew along side with her age; the older she got the more it became apparent to her parents that she was living in more of an invisible box, than the real world. Her imparities trapped her in life that seemed unlivable. Unable to subject themselves to the torment which enveloped them; watching, hearing and feeling the angst which Helen projected by throwing plates and screaming was enough for them to regret being blessed with their own senses. The Kellers, in hopes of a solution, hired Anne Sullivan, an educated blind woman, experienced in the field of educating sensory disabilities arrived at the Alabama home of the Kellers in 1887. There she worked with Helen for only a little over a month attempting to teach her to spell and understand the meaning of words v. the feeling of objects before she guided Helen to the water pump and a miracle unfolded. Helen understood the juxtaposition of the touch of water and the actual word 'water' Anne spelled out on her hand . Helen suddenly began to formulate the word 'wa...


... middle of paper ...


...ther or not the I function exists in the literal sense, its presence began to make its way into scientific rationality long before Christopher Reeves.

Sources Cited:

1)jstor home page, Scientific Monthly Vol.15 No.3
http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/bb/neuro/neuro03/web1/www.jstor.org

2)originresearch home page
http://originresearch.com/sd/sd3.cfm

3)The Life of Helen Keller
http://www.rnib.org.uk/xpedio/groups/public/documents/publicwebsite/public_keller.hcsp

4)Scientific America
http://www.sciam.com/askexpert_question.cfm?articleID=000BADA4-F9F7-1C95-8EEF809EC588F2D7&catID=3

5)Sensory Perceptions Homepage
http://216.239.33.100/search?q=cache:zYyZf7MEJKYC:www.hhmi.org/senses/senses.pdf+%22helen+keller%22+scientific+research+analysis+%22her+brain%22&hl=en&ie=UTF-8

6)More of the Life of Helen Keller
http://www.broadwaybeat.com/ridge/rrmircle.htm


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