Physical and Psychological Blindness

Physical and Psychological Blindness - Edward Chen Expos...

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Edward Chen September 25, 2007 Expos 101 EM HH05 Pros and Cons of Physical and Psychological Blindness Blindness is defined as the inability to see. A common way this word is used is in explaining the fact that one is visually impaired and physically unable to see. However, blindness can also be used to explain something psychologically. Psychological blindness is defined as being unable to see one’s past traumatic experiences. Both physical and psychological blindness’ serve to imprison as well as liberate the self. When one is physically blindness, the imprisonment he or she faces is the fact that he or she cannot physically see. Oliver Sacks is a neurologist who researches the experiences of the blind. He writes in his essay, “The Mind Eye” how the inability to use vision has its drawbacks. “To become blind, especially later in life, presents one with a huge, potentially overwhelming challenge: to find a new way of living, of ordering one’s world, when the old way has been destroyed.” (Sacks 474) Sack’s explanation on the hardships of physical blindness is further proved by a personal experience that occurred to a friend of mine. My friend once experienced a period of blindness due to an illness. He recounted how terrifying it was for him when he thought he would never be able to see again. The idea of never being able to set eyes on the faces of his loved ones as well as everything else was horrifying. He said that if he had stayed blind, he would have wished he wasn’t alive. 1
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John Hull is a man who became blind in one eye at the age of thirteen and gradually lost vision in his other eye until he became completely blind at the age of forty eight. He describes how at first he was “greatly distressed about the fading visual memories and images- the fact that he could no longer conjure up the faces of his wife or children, or of familiar and loved landscapes and places…” (Sacks 475) Hull’s description shows how physical blindness imprisons oneself. However, when one is physically blind, his or her other senses become heightened
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This note was uploaded on 05/04/2008 for the course EXPOSITORY 101 taught by Professor Mr during the Fall '06 term at Rutgers.

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Physical and Psychological Blindness - Edward Chen Expos...

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