The Diving-Bell and the Butterfly Hardcover – 10 Apr 1997
|New from||Used from|
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
On December 8, 1995, Jean-Dominique Bauby's life was forever altered when a part of his body he'd never heard of--his brain stem--was rendered inactive. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, his exquisitely painful memoir, is neither a triumphant account of recovery nor a journey into the abyss of self-pity. Instead, it is a tender testament to the power of language and love. At 43, Bauby was defined by success, wit and charisma. But in the course of a few bewildering minutes, the editor-in-chief of French Elle became a victim of the rare locked-in syndrome. The only way he could express his frustration, however, was by blinking his left eye. The rest of his body could no longer respond. Bauby was determined to escape the paralysis of his diving bell and free the butterflies of his imagination. And with the help of ESA, "a hit parade in which each letter is placed according to the frequency of its use in the French language," Bauby did so. Visitors, and eventually his editor, would read each letter aloud and he would blink at the right one. Slowly--painstakingly-- words, sentences, paragraphs and even this graceful book emerged.
Bauby relays the horrors and small graces of his struggle, which range from awaking one day to discover his right eye being sewn shut to realising the significance of Father's Day, a holiday previously absent from his family's "emotional calendar": "Today we spent the whole of the symbolic day together, affirming that even a rough sketch, a shadow, a tiny fragment of a dad is still a dad." The author makes it clear that being locked in doesn't kick open the doors of perception, but The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is nonetheless a celebration of life. Jean Dominique-Bauby died of a heart attack on March 9, 1997, two days after his book was published in France. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
* 'Vibrantly, insistently, a tale for our times... it is one of the great books of the century.' Financial Times. * 'This is a memoir where the man speaks for the moment, and it is one of the great books of the century.' Jackie Wullschlager, Financial Times. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
Bauby's style deserves a mention. Whether through skill, detachment, selflessness, or purely based on the difficulty of communication, Bauby adopts a style that is not only honest, but subtle, to the point, without pity, and riddled with dark humour. If this was an overly dramatic novel full of misery and self pity then I would not be wasting my time writing a review. One thing that really struck me while reading this book was Bauby's sense of acceptance of it all.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An amazing book- touched me in ways no other book ever has. Would recommend (ie. Force everyone in my social circle to read)Published 19 days ago by Amazon Customer
An amazing and truly moving book.....A real life story and I've just ordered the dvd .Published 1 month ago by Cathy Rawlings
This book was written by Jean-Dominique Bauby after he had suffered a massive stroke & was suffering from "Locked In Syndrome". Read morePublished 8 months ago by Debra F
An amazingly emotional book without over egging the pudding. The author 'wrote' this by blinking his one eye while is a 'vegetative' state. Read morePublished 8 months ago by catsholiday