Alzheimer’s Disease, Media Representations and the Politics by Megan-Jane Johnstone

By Megan-Jane Johnstone

Drawing on broad information together with information media studies and commentaries, documentaries, courts and courtroom experiences, motion pictures, web pages, expert literature and govt and non-government organizations, this ebook explores the 'Alzheimerisation' of the euthanasia debate, studying the shift in recent times in public attitudes in the direction of the desirability and ethical permissibility of euthanasia as an end-of-life 'solution' for individuals residing with the ailment - not only at its finish level, but additionally at past phases. With awareness to media representations and public understandings of Alzheimer's sickness, Alzheimer's sickness, Media Representations and the Politics of Euthanasia sheds mild at the procedures contributing to those adjustments in public opinion, investigating the drivers of vexed political debate surrounding the difficulty and interpreting the style within which either side of the euthanasia debate mobilise help, painting their competitors and utilize media applied sciences to border the phrases of discourse.

Paving the best way for a better point of highbrow honesty in regards to a subject matter wearing major coverage implications, this ebook may be of curiosity to students of media and verbal exchange, social hobbies and political conversation, and the sociology of overall healthiness and drugs, in addition to researchers and execs within the fields of palliative and finish of existence care.

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Extra info for Alzheimer’s Disease, Media Representations and the Politics of Euthanasia: Constructing Risk and Selling Death in an Ageing Society

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He shot down all my arguments (Lakoff and Johnstone 2003: 4). 26 Alzheimer’s Disease, Media Representations and the Politics of Euthanasia Contrary to what is commonly thought, metaphors encompass much more than mere language. As political linguists and cognitive scientists have increasingly shown, because of the fundamental role metaphors play in structuring what people think, perceive, experience, and how they relate to other people, metaphors (and importantly, the conceptual systems to which they are linked) also govern people’s ‘everyday functioning, down to the most mundane details’ (Lakoff and Johnson 2003: 3).

In Chapter 10, the final chapter of the book, the intersection between euthanasia politics and public opinion in western liberal democratic countries is explored. It will be argued that, contrary to popular opinion, the proposal to allow euthanasia as a morally warranted option in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias is neither simple, medically objective, nor evidence-based. Rather it is complex, highly emotive, and ideology-based. It will be concluded that euthanasia as a treatment option in Alzheimer disease and other dementias is of far-reaching importance as a public policy issue.

At another level, these projections might however equally serve another unintended purpose, such as justifying the rationalization (rather than the resourcing) of health and social care services for people living with the disease, notably in the interests of upholding ‘intergenerational justice’ (Howe and Healy 2005, Johnstone and Kanitsaki 2009). e. those under 65 years, can also develop dementia). Nonetheless the risk of developing dementia increases with age. This is also the case with Alzheimer’s disease, with some critics suggesting that despite Alzheimer’s being characterized as a ‘disease’, the reality is that ‘brains age’ and that so-called ‘Alzheimer’s disease’ it merely the manifestation of senescence – of growing old (Fox 1989, Whitehouse 2008).

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