Christy Brown
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Christy Brown

My Left Foot: The Story of Christy Brown

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About Him

Grew Up… with a loving family that, unfortunately, didn’t realize that Christy’s condition was simply a physical ailment and not a mental disability. Christy only had control over his left foot, the rest of his body paralyzed, including his tongue and face. As such, his family assumed that he was mentally handicapped, which was far from the truth.

Living… with new hope. After he proves to his family that he has been conscious of everything all his life, they treat him with a newfound respect. Christy takes up hobbies like painting and writing. The city of Dublin shapes Christy’s life as much as his family influence, and living here has a way of making even able-bodied men feel trapped in a way, but also contained in a kind of cultural life force.
Profession… artist. Astoundingly for a boy who was thought to be completely mentally retarded, he blossoms into a fully-fledged artist, expressing himself not only through a kind of strained speech but also through unbridled artistic communication. His paintings and writing speak for him, showing a rich inner life – both scarred and very alive.

Interests… being pushed around in a wheelbarrow, drinking, and expressing himself in any way he can.    

Relationship Status… single.

Challenge… coming to terms with his ailments. Even in young adulthood, Christy finds it difficult to experience every day life. His physical disabilities are crippling, but he strives to free himself from his body and experience the inner life in its extremes and exhilarations.  

Personality… excited to live, if a little bitter about his condition. Christy is definitely a haunted man, but with the love of his family and friends, he is able to transcend his problems and experience intense moments of joy, which is all anyone can ever really ask for.

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