Helen Keller Captured on Video

You’ve all heard about Helen Keller and her teacher Annie Sul­li­van. Now, thanks to this vin­tage footage from the 1930s, you can see Keller in the flesh and dis­cov­er how she learned to talk (then  even­tu­al­ly became an author, lec­tur­er, and cham­pi­on of many pro­gres­sive caus­es). It’s worth watch­ing, par­tic­u­lar­ly through the stir­ring fin­ish. We’ve added this clip to our YouTube Favorites.

via Boing Boing

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Comments (2)
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  • Fritz Meinel Cheesman says:

    I am so impressed. This is hero­ical and more than a won­der for Helen and Annie Sul­li­van who ded­i­cat­ed the whole life mak­ing this won­der. May you rest in the high­est heav­en. The human­i­ty is liv­ing in you both. Thanks for this les­son of per­se­ver­ance.

  • Annie Sul­li­van loves Helen uncon­di­tion­al­ly, and Helen’s face reflects this joy. This film clip has to be one of the most touch­ing I have ever seen.

    Thank you.

  • Gary Davis says:

    This is a won­der­ful clip, but I don’t under­stand how she would know what what she said meant? Isn’t she just repeat­ing sounds? How does that become knowl­edge?

  • Cierraskillern says:

     Helen Keller was­nt realy dom.She was smart all her life.This is by Cier­ra.

  • ima says:

    “dumb” mean­ing unable to speak. She learned to use her voice long after she had mas­tered braille etc. and had a store­house of knowl­edge — this was a final step of her edu­ca­tion.

  • Lairsa says:

    I love the video but why isn’t it Cap­tioned?

  • Dawn Moneyhan says:

    I first learned of Helen Keller when I was 7 yrs old and through­out my life she has remained a con­stant inspi­ra­tion. She is my hero. While I am too young to have known her in per­son I have always admired and respect­ed this woman I felt so con­nect­ed to. Although I can see and hear, Helen inspired me to learn sign lan­guage at the age of 8 through the use of books, and by age 9 I taught myself to read braille. I am now 42 and this is the first time I have ever heard her voice. Thank you for putting this online, it only adds to the inspi­ra­tion she con­tin­ues to be in my life. Because of Helen Keller I grew up believ­ing that any­thing is pos­si­ble if a per­son sim­ply invests their heart and soul. While Annie Sul­li­van is accred­it­ed as her teacher, it was Helen’s own heart and soul that made her many achieve­ments pos­si­ble. God Bless you Helen, you will nev­er be for­got­ten.

  • eric says:

    annie sul­li­van knew exact­ly how peo­ple heard “dumb” — she made that point again and again through­out her life, as did keller. so when she says ‘I am not dumb now’, it has mul­ti­ple lev­els of mean­ing. that word (“dumb”) was a gaunt­let to gen­er­a­tions of deaf peo­ple.

    peo­ple still used that word when I was a kid in the ’70s. most peo­ple under 40 today haven’t ever even heard that usage. which I would say is progress.

  • M. says:

    This is amaz­ing

  • janiek says:

    Absolute­ly amaz­ing video. And what amaz­ing women. This made me cry. To think that Ann Sul­li­van remained so devot­ed — and was so bril­liant in the way she taught. And that Helen became such a bril­liant thinker, writer and speak­er. All I can say to any­one, strug­gling with any chal­lenge, whether it be a lack of patience or some­thing much graver, is nev­er give up. Nev­er give up.

  • Red Cell says:

    Tech­ni­cal­ly, she was cap­tured on film, not video.

  • Timmmii says:

    wow. dumb­found­ed by this. How have we nev­er seen this before??

  • I love the video.She was smart all her life

  • deaf says:

    Auto cap­tions are not accept­able — they should be cleaned up.

  • yall should real­ly check the video out “teach­ing helen to speak” it is ami­az­ing and fun­ny thanks

  • Deep Dale West says:

    It’s good to see the iron did­n’t leave any per­ma­nent scars. Is there a Braille ver­sion of this video?

  • Victoria says:

    Bril­liant women. Nev­er tru­ly appre­ci­at­ed for their exquis­ite inven­tive­ness. Par­tic­u­lar­ly Annie Sul­li­van. Absolute­ly for­mi­da­ble intel­lects.

  • r.ayling says:

    Gary Davis, she learned words by asso­ci­a­tion. The first word she under­stood was water. Annie taught her by pump­ing water into her hand, then spelled it in sign lan­guage in her hands

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