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For Christmas….The Diving Bell and the Butterfly


The Diving Bell and the ButterflyToday’s recommendation for Christmas giving is….. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly, which is a translation of the French memoir Le scaphandre et le papillon by Jean-Dominique Bauby. This book is getting plenty of attention at the moment because an American movie version has been released.

The book describes Bauby’s life after he suffered a stroke that left him with a condition called locked-in syndrome. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly was written by Bauby blinking his left eyelid. He used a frequency-ordered alphabet and he had to blink multiple times to select each letter. The book took about 200,000 blinks to complete and each word took approximately two minutes. Bauby died two days after the book was published in France.

This is no ordinary book – if you want to humble and inspire someone, give them this book.

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Richard Davies

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