Helen Keller In Anne Sullivan's The Miracle Worker

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“Keep on beginning and failing. Each time you fail, start all over again, and you will grow stronger until you have accomplished a purpose - not the one you began with perhaps, but one you’’ll be glad to remember.” This statement was made by Anne Sullivan, the teacher of Helen Keller during the 1880’s. The early life of Helen Keller, a blind and deaf women, is depicted throughout the non-fiction play The Miracle Worker written by William Gibson. Helen Keller was born a healthy child, yet due to an illness she contracted at the age of one and a half, she was left blind and deaf. This would give her little ability to communicate with the outside world. Throughout her early life Helen found ways to communicate with the people that affected her…show more content…
Anne began working with Helen and despite all the difficulties that she faced when attempting to teach her, she overcame her challenges and taught Helen how to interact with others in the world. Due to the great perseverance of Anne Sullivan when teaching Helen, and her focus on educating her, Helen Keller eventually accomplished great achievements despite her handicap. Annie’s role in Helen’s life, depicted in the play, teaches readers that despite difficult problems that can make one’s life more complex, one is able to persevere and overcome their challenges in order to accomplish success. Throughout the play The Miracle Worker, Anne Sullivan displays the ability to persevere through difficult situations. Early on in her life, Anne faced challenges as her family was among many Irish immigrants to America during the Great Famine of Ireland. Anne’s family…show more content…
Sullivan exemplify her perseverance through her childhood, but through her teaching of Helen as well. As Helen grew older, her frustration with her disability advanced, and she became much more difficult to control–eventually driving her parents to recruit a teacher for their six year old child. Anne Sullivan, “an inexperienced half blind Yankee schoolgirl”, as described by Mr. Keller, was enlisted to help the family, and was sent to Alabama in order to educate Helen. Anne’s task was difficult from the start, as her region of origin, the North, was greatly disliked by Southerners during this time period. On her first day working with the Kellers, her charges doubted her ability to educate Helen. In a discussion between Kate and Captain Keller about the ability of Ms. Sullivan to succeed, Kate states “She’s had nine operations on her eyes. One just before she left.” To which Keller dubiously replied “Blind, good heavens, do they expect one bind child to teach another? Has she experience at least, how long did she teach there?” Kate answering Keller explains how this is Anne’s first position but how her education was advanced. Where Keller later responds with “Here’s a houseful of grown-ups can’t cope with the child, how can an inexperienced half blind Yankee schoolgirl manage her?” (Gibson 520). This conversation displays how although the Keller family did not necessarily believe in the ability of Anne in the beginning of the drama, their beliefs eventually
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