The Social Construction of Dementia: Confused Professionals?
In this study the social construction of dementia is examined closely for the first time. Nancy Harding and Colin Palfrey show how Western society sees dementia as a disease, rather than a natural part of the ageing process. They take issue with the constructed view of the body as a machine, whose parts 'break down' and need replacement. Furthermore, the authors argue, the various explanations of the causes of dementia are nothing but speculation dressed up as theories, which serve only to confuse the carers.
Based on an intensive three-year-long evaluation of a community care service for older people with dementia, `The Social Construction of Dementia' looks at the experience of users and providers alike, and provides a refreshing new viewpoint on the `disease' of dementia.
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