The Diving Bell and the Butterfly

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Mar 6, 2008 - Biography & Autobiography - 146 pages
In December 1995, Jean-Dominique Bauby, the 43-year-old editor of French Elle, suffered a massive stroke that left him permanently paralyzed, a victim of “locked in syndrome.” Once known for his gregariousness and wit, Bauby now finds himself imprisoned in an inert body, able to communicate only by blinking his left eye. The miracle is that in doing so he was able to compose this stunningly eloquent memoir.In a voice that is by turns wistful and mischievous, angry and sardonic, Bauby gives us a celebration of the liberating power of consciousness: what it is like to spend a day with his children, to imagine lying in bed beside his wife, to conjure up the flavor of delectable meals even as he is fed through at tube. Most of all, this triumphant book lets us witness an indomitable spirit and share in the pure joy of its own survival.

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User Review  - DonnaEverhart -

This book was haunting, sad, and funny. With wit, charm, graciousness, and humor, Jean-Dominique Bauby brings the reader into his world of "locked-in" syndrome. It's a very rare syndrome. After ... Read full review

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User Review  - noblechicken -

An afternoon reading memoir of French Elle magazine editor, Jean-Dominique Bauby, who suffered a stroke at the age of 43 and was left with "locked in syndrome”. He was a delightful author, and clever ... Read full review

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About the author (2008)

JEAN-DOMINIQUE BAUBY was born in France in 1952. He attended school in Paris. After working as a journalist for a number of years, Bauby became the editor-in-chief of Elle magazine in Paris in 1991. On December 8, 1995 he had a stroke which left him with the condition known as locked-in syndrome. Bauby died on March 9, 1997, two days after the French publication of The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. He was the father of two children, Theophile and Celeste.

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