International Journal of Applied Research
Vol. 6, Issue 7, Part C (2020)
The ideas of revival and recovery: A comparative study of the story of My life and Autobiography of a schizophrenic girl
Over the years writing an autobiography has become a status symbol for many celebrities. Whether it is a sports star, or a film artist, or a business tycoon, many have shown an inexplicable penchant for this literary activity. In writing and publishing their stories, most of them have, more than pursuing their literary calling, the purpose of materialist gain in their minds. There are still some which aim at ‘sensationalism’ and professional as well as personal vindictiveness. Among all these low key stuff it is worthwhile to consider the first person narratives of two persons who have written them under extraordinary situations. In this article, an attempt has been made to explore the less frequent reasons behind writing an autobiography like overcoming a physical or psychological hindrance, gaining a diagnostic process etc. as have been done by the authors taken for study here. The autobiographies taken for a comparative study here are The Story of My Life by Helen Keller (1903) and Autobiography of a Schizophrenic Girl (1951) by Marguerite Sechehaye. The former is an autobiography which records the story of the struggle of a blind and deaf woman who underwent extraordinary circumstances in her life before penning down her inspirational account. However, the later is not an autobiography in the strict sense of the term. The book by Sechehaye, who is a psychoanalyst, is a record of the schizophrenic experiences of a young girl called Renee whom the author was treating. This study aims to highlight the essential role of autobiographies in two of its curios varieties in opening an alternative channel of communication for their subjects and how it facilitates distress, diagnosis and healing. Accordingly a comparative study of both the texts have been done under the subheadings of ‘introduction of the authors’, ‘the extraordinary lives’, ‘why an autobiography’, ‘writing the first person for distress and diagnosis’ and ‘role of memory’.
How to cite this article:
Jyotiprakash Nayak. The ideas of revival and recovery: A comparative study of the story of My life and Autobiography of a schizophrenic girl . Int J Appl Res 2020;6(7):171-173.