'By the summer of 1998, it had become clear that there was something wrong with my hearing. It didn't happen suddenly but softly, so softly I almost wasn't aware of it happening; sound seemed to have stolen away …'
For twelve years, Bella Bathurst was deaf. She missed the punchlines and the jokes, avoided busy restaurants and raucous parties, and grew her hair long to cover hearing aids. But then, twelve years later, pioneering surgery on her ears gave her the chance to hear again.
Sound is the extraordinary story of Bella's journey into deafness and back to hearing. Mixing memoir with interviews with soldiers, sign language experts, musicians and mental health workers, Bella explores what it means to live with and without sound, and in the process uncovers a hidden world of sense and connection.
If sight gives us the world, then hearing – or our ability to listen – gives us each other. Warm, wry and honest, this is a story not just for the one in six of us with hearing loss, but for everyone who ever listened.
Published in partnership with the Wellcome Collection.
Wellcome Collection is a free museum and library that aims to challenge how we think and feel about health. Inspired by the medical objects and curiosities collected by Henry Wellcome, it connects science, medicine, life and art. Wellcome Collection exhibitions, events and books explore a diverse range of subjects, including consciousness, forensic medicine, emotions, sexology, identity and death.
Wellcome Collection is part of Wellcome, a global charitable foundation that exists to improve health for everyone by helping great ideas to thrive, funding over 14,000 researchers and projects in more than 70 countries.