A Secretly Handicapped Man
Born over 80 years ago without feet & with only one hand, the author faced discrimination because he looked different, then he made the difficult choice to have his legs amputated which provided freedom from pain and a life free from snap judgment. More
“In the space of seventy years I was variously labeled as crippled, deformed, handicapped and disabled, more recently as a person with disabilities, and currently as physically challenged. The evolving choice of epithets traces the gradual changes in societal perceptions, but all these terms have a common theme; they designate someone who is different."
Norbert Nathanson, Northport, ME
After more than 30 years weathering stares and severe public and professional stigma, growing up in the working class of Depression Era Pittsburgh, and trying desperately to enter the new burgeoning field of television, the author experienced a miracle. Born without feet and with only one hand, new advances in medical science provided artificial legs which gave him a normal height, a natural appearance and gait, and permitted him to enjoy a previously unknown, life altering public anonymity. Being out of the spotlight of public stigma brought him peace. He never shared his story, and held his secrets fiercely. He has never seen himself as being different, nor defined himself in dramatic terms. An experienced, serious and driven educator and television executive, outdoorsman, sailor, carpenter, fisherman, he has formed his reality. His survival is a triumph, his life a victory. He doesn't understand that his accomplishments are remarkable.
Students of sociology and psychology will find this book a valuable commentary on how society has treated the handicapped over the past 80+ years. Mr. Nathanson struggled for a lifetime for full-time employment, due to disability discrimination in the workplace. The book is being released in time for “National Disability Employment Awareness Month” in October.
Sample images are available upon request. View book trailer here:
"...it is truly inspirational....it will help other people to have a greater appreciation of the issues you so eloquently describe by your experiences . . . It is an extraordinary work. I could not put it down."
Dr. Anthony Grieco, NYU Medical School
“The book provides any reader, casual or otherwise, deep insights into the life of a person born very different physically and later transformed into yet another physical being. That makes the story unique, in a class of its own. I come away from it with a much deeper understanding of the impact of handicapping conditions on a person’s development. Not a tear or moment of heartache is left out. What this man went through in his rise above adversity is inspirational in every respect.”
Don Ferguson, Dean Emeritus, School of Education, New Mexico State University
"What I so admire is the lack of self pity. It is one painful step forward after another, instead of railing at the world. The author gives us a metaphor for many people's life. And the memoir holds a happy ending after all the difficult decisions he had to make."
Diane H. Schetky, M.D., retired psychiatrist and poet.