The Diving-bell and the Butterfly

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Harper Perennial, 1997 - Cerebrovascular disease - 143 pages
67 Reviews

'Locked-in syndrome: paralysed from head to toe, the patient, his mind intact, is imprisoned inside his own body, unable to speak or move. In my case, blinking my left eyelid is my only means of communication.'

In December 1995, Jean-Dominique Bauby, editor-in-chief of French 'Elle' and the father of two young children, suffered a massive stroke and found himself paralysed and speechless, but entirely conscious, trapped by what doctors call 'locked-in syndrome'. Using his only functioning muscle - his left eyelid - he began dictating this remarkable story, painstakingly spelling it out letter by letter.

His book offers a haunting, harrowing look inside the cruel prison of locked-in syndrome, but it is also a triumph of the human spirit. The acclaimed 2007 film adaptation, directed by Julian Schnabel, won Best Director at Cannes and was nominated for the Palme d'Or.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - BookConcierge - LibraryThing

5***** and a ❤ An extraordinary memoir by a quadriplegic. Tender, and not at all maudlin. Bauby, age 44, suffered a massive stroke in his brain stem. He emerged from a coma completely paralyzed ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - rainpebble - LibraryThing

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly: A Memoir of Life in Death by Jean-Dominique Bauby; (4 1/2*) This is a wonderful memoir. Life is unpredictable. We all take it for granted at times. What this small ... Read full review

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About the author (1997)

Jean-Dominique Bauby was born in Paris in 1952. He was the editor-in-chief of French 'Elle'. In 1996 he set up ALIS (Association du Locked-In Syndrome). He died on 9 March 1997.

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