Traveling Blind: Adventures in Vision with a Guide Dog by My Side (New Directions in the Human-Animal Bond (Hardcover))

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9781557535573: Traveling Blind: Adventures in Vision with a Guide Dog by My Side (New Directions in the Human-Animal Bond (Hardcover))

Traveling Blind is a romance, a travel adventure, an emotional quest, and a deeply reflective description of coming to terms with lack of sight. It reveals the invisible work of navigating with a guide dog while learning to perceive the world in new ways. Although an intensely personal account, Traveling Blind is not simply memoir, for it extends beyond one person's experience to illuminate our understandings of vision informed by the academic fields of disability studies, feminist ethnography, and the study of human-animal bonds. What does it mean to "travel blind"? What is it like to live in a world where things are not black and white so much as shades of gray? How does it feel to navigate through constantly changing imagery that requires changing inner perspectives as well? What can experiences of blindness tell us about sight? The book confronts these questions and more. In a series of beautifully textured stories, the author takes the reader on a fascinating journey as she travels with Teela, her lively ""golden dog," through airports, city streets, and southwest desert landscapes, exploring these surroundings with changed sight. This unusual account of travel will inspire the sighted as well as the blind, offering pointed observations on processes of learning to work with a service animal and on coming to terms with a disability. In remarkably visual detail, Krieger makes palpable an ambiguous world. Repeatedly confronted with social stereotypes (that she should be totally blind and incapable of mobility), she comes to value her own unique ways of seeing and her interdependence with both her animal and human companions. Her descriptions of exquisite natural landscapes and intimate personal moments will touch as well as educate readers.

A companion website to this book can be found at: susankrieger.stanford.edu/travelingblind

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About the Author:

Susan Krieger, a sociologist and writer, teaches in the Program in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Stanford University. She is the author of six previously published books: Traveling Blind: Adventures in Vision with a Guide Dog by My Side (2010), Things No Longer There: A Memoir of Losing Sight and Finding Vision (2005), The Family Silver: Essays on Relationships among Women (1996), Social Science and the Self: Personal Essays on an Art Form (1991), The Mirror Dance: Identity in a Women’s Community (1983), and Hip Capitalism (1979)

Review:

"As her dog is a guide for her, Krieger is a guide for the reader to the world of 'traveling blind.' Readers will be fascinated by the insight into service animals, and guide dogs in particular, learning how these specially trained animals actually do their job. You begin to understand the taken for grantedness of the human-animal interaction; in the process, you have been privy to the intricate dance that goes into working with a guide dog. A particularly strong academic contribution of the book is the interior view of the experience of disability. This is a book that will involve and transform the reader, who comes to identify with Krieger's experience and to rethink what it means 'to see,' just as the author must do in her travels." -- Esther D. Rothblum, Ph.D. Professor of Women's Studies, San Diego State University

'Traveling Blind is a true love story between a professor, her guide dog Teela, and her life partner Hannah. Susan Krieger writes the book as a feminist ethnographer taking a personal journey into blindness.
Knowing her vision is failing on an almost daily basis, the author struggles with her need to maintain independence, deal with societal attitudes about her as a person who does not look blind, and her need to imprint on her memory the visualization of the holiday luminarias she loves. Exploring for, but fighting against, the impending shift in her life blindness will bring, she relies more on tactile cues and begins to appreciate the positive attention Teela brings to her life.
Using the phrase "broken eyesight," she describes how walking with a guide dog, one walks differently; having partial vision, one sees differently.
This highly personal account of the struggle and slow acceptance of her blindness is a must read for those interested in the human condition.
-- Ed Eames, Ph.D. and Toni Eames, M.S. are co-founders of the International Association of Assistance Dog Partners (www.iaadp.org), a cross disability consumer advocacy organization for people partnered with guide, hearing, and service dogs. Like Dr. Krieger, Dr. Eames lost his vision in adulthood, while Mrs. Eames came to blindness as a young child.

This is ultimately a book about how we agree to see the world, and what we agree to ignore, wherever we are on the spectrum of sightedness. As the author takes to the road, we come to understand that to "see" is some combination of perception, memory, and desire. As she explores the commitments between humans and animals, she shows traveling as a challenge for both, but worth it all the time. In crystal-clear writing she tells us what to watch out for, what to be surprised by seeing, shows us the unquestioned ability to see should be questioned after all. Traveling Blind is an unforgettable experience, and at the same time a great read. --Mary Felstiner, Visiting Professor of History, Stanford University, Author, Out Of Joint: A Private & Public Story of Arthritis

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Book Description 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Hardcover. Traveling Blind is a romance, a travel adventure, an emotional quest, and a deeply reflective description of coming to terms with lack of sight. It reveals the invisible work .Shipping may be from our Sydney, NSW warehouse or from our UK or US warehouse, depending on stock availability. 205 pages. 0.522. Bookseller Inventory # 9781557535573

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