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A Relational Approach to Dementia Care

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Abstract

This chapter theorises a relational approach to dementia care which is inspired by posthumanism. It explores the wider environmental factors, which not only shape the lives of people with dementia, but also the context in which caregiving takes place. Drawing on the philosopher Jane Bennett’s theory of ‘vibrant matter’, it considers the care home as a posthuman ecology of care, in which agency is distributed between people with dementia, carers, and other ‘non-human’ elements. It then proposes how participatory performance might support this type of dementia care in practice. It reflects on the creative affordances of a care home, and how object work, embodied movement practices, and multisensory approaches can encourage care staff, residents and artists to see it as a creative space.

Keywords

  • Relationality
  • Embodied selfhood
  • Posthumanism
  • Environment
  • Sensory ecology

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-51077-0_4
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Notes

  1. 1.

    Kitwood outlined six psychological requirements that needed to be met in order for people with dementia to achieve a high standard of person-centred care (see 1997, 82).

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Hatton, N. (2021). A Relational Approach to Dementia Care. In: Performance and Dementia. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-51077-0_4

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