Dementia and detectives: Alzheimer's disease in crime fiction

Orr, David (2020) Dementia and detectives: Alzheimer's disease in crime fiction. Dementia, 19 (3). pp. 560-573. ISSN 1471-3012

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Fictional representations of dementia have burgeoned in recent years, and scholars have amply explored their double-edged capacity to promote tragic perspectives or normalising images of ‘living well’ with the condition. Yet to date, there has been only sparse consideration of the treatment afforded dementia within the genre of crime fiction. Focusing on two novels, Emma Healey’s Elizabeth is Missing and Alice LaPlante’s Turn of Mind, this article considers what it means in relation to the ethics of representation that these authors choose to cast as their amateur detective narrators women who have dementia. Analysing how their narrative portrayals frame the experience of living with dementia, it becomes apparent that features of the crime genre inflect the meanings conveyed. While aspects of the novels may reinforce problem-based discourses around dementia, in other respects they may spur meaningful reflection about it among the large readership of this genre.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Social Work and Social Care
Subjects: L Education
Depositing User: Deeptima Massey
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2018 16:02
Last Modified: 01 Apr 2020 10:57

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