Joe by Michael Blastland
The Only Boy in the World

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An exceptionally haunting memoir that also shows us what it is to be really human. In a hardware store, Joe sits on a display toilet amidst the throng of customers and wees, smiling serenely. He thumps crying babies. He is amazed when the car he runs in front of actually hits him. Joe is ten and mentally disabled. He's funny, fascinating and maddening, and this memoir tells his moving story, but also argues that until we know Joe's life, we can't understand our own. Through philosophy, psychology and medical research, the author explains how we are mind-readers, how we make sense of other people and how we understand guilt and innocence, and shows that Joe sets our humanity in sharp relief. But in that case, is Joe part of it? The author who asks that outrageous question is Joe's father.


About Michael Blastland

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MICHAEL BLASTLAND is a writer, broadcaster, and the creator of More or Less, the BBC Radio 4 show. ANDREW DILNOT, the former host on the show, is the principal of St. Hugh’s College, Oxford, and was the director of England’s Institute for Fiscal Studies.
Published May 26, 2011 by Profile Books. 228 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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The Guardian

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This singularity is not just expressed in Joe's obsessive need to watch videos over and over again, but also because Joe's mind is the only mind that Joe thinks about.

Mar 31 2006 | Read Full Review of Joe : The Only Boy in the World

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