Cover image for Aging together : dementia, friendship, and flourishing communities
Title:
Aging together : dementia, friendship, and flourishing communities
Author:
McFadden, Susan H., author.
Personal Author:
Edition:
Johns Hopkins Paperback editon.
Publication Information:
Baltimore : Johns Hopkins University Press, [2014]

©2011
Physical Description:
xiv, 235 pages ; 23 cm
Summary:
"Never in human history have there been so many people entering old age -- roughly one-third of whom will experience some form of neurodegeneration as they age. This seismic demographic shift will force us all to rethink how we live and deal with our aging population. Susan H. McFadden and John T. McFadden propose a radical reconstruction of our societal understanding of old age. Rather than categorize elders based on their respective cognitive consciousness, the McFaddens contend that the only humanistic, supportive, and realistic approach is to find new ways to honor and recognize the dignity, worth, and personhood of those journeying into dementia. Doing so, they argue, counters the common view of dementia as a personal tragedy shared only by close family members and replaces it with the understanding that we are all living with dementia as the baby boomers age, early screening becomes more common, and a cure remains elusive. The McFaddens' inclusive vision calls for social institutions, especially faith communities, to search out and build supportive, ongoing friendships that offer hospitality to all persons, regardless of cognitive status. Drawing on medicine, social science, philosophy, and religion to provide a broad perspective on aging, Aging Together offers a vision of relationships filled with love, joy, and hope in the face of a condition that all too often elicits anxiety, hopelessness, and despair"--Provided by publisher.
Language:
English
Contents:
Dilemmas of dementia diagnoses -- Receiving the diagnosis -- Personhood -- What is friendship? -- When our friends travel the dementia road -- Dementia fear and anxiety -- Beyond fear and anxiety -- The flourishing community -- Congregations as schools for friendship -- The things that abide -- Practicing friendship in the "thin places" -- Memory, forgetting, and the present time.
Added Author:
ISBN:
9781421413754
Format :
Book

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City of Tonawanda Library RC521 .M44 2014 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Clearfield Library RC521 .M44 2014 Adult Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Summary

Summary

Never in human history have there been so many people entering old age--roughly one-third of whom will experience some form of neurodegeneration as they age. This seismic demographic shift will force us all to rethink how we live and deal with our aging population.

Susan H. McFadden and John T. McFadden propose a radical reconstruction of our societal understanding of old age. Rather than categorizing elders based on their cognitive consciousness, the McFaddens contend that the only humanistic, supportive, and realistic approach is to find new ways to honor and recognize the dignity, worth, and personhood of those journeying into dementia. Doing so, they argue, counters the common view of dementia as a personal tragedy shared only by close family members and replaces it with the understanding that we are all living with dementia as the baby boomers age, particularly as early screening becomes more common and as a cure remains elusive. The McFaddens' inclusive vision calls for social institutions, especially faith communities, to build supportive, ongoing friendships that offer hospitality to all persons, regardless of cognitive status.

Drawing on medicine, social science, philosophy, and religion to provide a broad perspective on aging, Aging Together offers a vision of relationships filled with love, joy, and hope in the face of a condition that all too often elicits anxiety, hopelessness, and despair.


Author Notes

Susan H. McFadden is professor emerita of psychology at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. She writes extensively on aging, religion, and spirituality. John T. McFadden is Memory Care Chaplain at the Appleton Health Care Center.


Reviews 1

Choice Review

Unprecedented numbers of aging baby boomers are receiving the dreaded diagnosis of dementia. Susan McFadden (psychology, Univ. of Wisconsin, Oshkosh) and John McFadden (chaplain with Goodwill Industries of North Central Wisconsin) boldly dispel the interpretation of cognitive decline as a personal tragedy to be grieved and instead propose that aging should be a journey involving others. As they lead the reader along "the dementia road," the authors attempt to replace fear and anxiety with the courage and commitment to include those who are willing to walk into the land of forgetfulness with the sufferer. They cast a vision of a "flourishing community" that cultivates creative venues to honor all relationships, in sickness and in health--in so doing widening the lens to include many dimensions of friendship. A provocative discussion of Aristotle's definition of a virtuous friendship provides ancient philosophical underpinnings in the conversation on friendship. McFadden and McFadden present contemporary psychological theories (e.g., those of Robert Atchley, Laura Carstensen, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi) that support the need to address innovative intergenerational programs and initiatives within friendship networks and faith-based communities. This must-read volume will inspire the reader to contemplate the call to care for others with self-giving love. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readers. S. Durr Macon State College


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