The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
just a few of us discussed the reluctant fundamentalist – the book for next time is The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is a translation of the French memoir Le scaphandre et le papillon by journalist Jean-Dominique Bauby. It describes what his life is like after suffering a massive stroke that left him with a condition called Locked-In syndrome.
The entire book was written by Bauby blinking his left eyelid. An amanuensis repeatedly recited a frequency-ordered alphabet (E, L, A, O, I, N, S, D …), until Bauby blinked to choose the next letter. The book took about 200,000 blinks to write and each word took approximately two minutes.
Runners up were: Vernon God Little, The Elfish Gene and The Butterfly Collector.
Date of next Meeting: Wednesday 5th March (note only two weeks, but it’s a short book) in Mango Landin on Brixton Water Lane.
I loved “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly”, but the movie I’d rather see is “My Stroke of Insight”, which is the amazing bestselling book by Dr Jill Bolte Taylor. It is an incredible story and there’s a happy ending. She was a 37 year old Harvard brain scientist who had a stroke in the left half of her brain. The story is about how she fully recovered, what she learned and experienced, and it teaches a lot about how to live a better life. Her TEDTalk at TED dot com is fantastic too. It’s been spread online millions of times and you’ll see why!