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The Blind in French Society from the Middle Ages to the Century of Louis Braille$
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Zina Weygand

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804757683

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804757683.001.0001

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Sensationalism and Sensorial Impairments

Sensationalism and Sensorial Impairments

(p.57) Chapter 4 Sensationalism and Sensorial Impairments
The Blind in French Society from the Middle Ages to the Century of Louis Braille
Stanford University Press

This chapter begins by considering Locke's attempt to resolve the problem of the origin and nature of human knowledge from a sensualist and empirical perspective. It then examines Diderot's first work on the theory of knowledge, The Letter on the Blind for the Benefit of Those Who See, which combines metaphysical speculations with a number of scientific observations. This is followed by examples of blind people who were educated at home by means of the combined resources of hearing, memory, and touch a Frenchwoman, Mélanie de Salignac (1744–66), daughter of financier Pierre Vallet de Salignac and of Sophie Volland's elder sister, Marie-Jeanne-Elisabeth; an Austrian, Maria-Theresia von Paradis (1759–1824), daughter of a court councilor of the imperial government, Joseph–Anton von Paradis; and a German, Johann-Ludwig Weissenburg (1752–1800), son of Ludwig Weissenburg, who held an office at the court of the Palatine Prince, Karl–Theodor.

Keywords:   blind, education, touch, Locke, Diderot, Mélanie de Salignac, Maria-Theresia von Paradis, Johann-Ludwig Weissenburg

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