Skip to 0 minutes and 5 secondsThe language we use to talk about dementia affects how people living with dementias are represented and understood, and subsequently, how they feel about themselves. The arts can help us find new ways of talking about dementia, that enrich the current public narrative about this condition. And help to reduce social and cultural stigma that often surrounds it. In this final chapter, we will explore the ways in which language-- both verbal and nonverbal-- shapes how we think about and interact with people living with a dementia. We will discuss how the arts might offer new ways of articulating different dementia experiences and help to remove barriers to communication for people living with dementia.

Skip to 0 minutes and 49 secondsWe will look at this from a range of perspectives, including representations of dementia in the media, literature, clinical accounts, and care settings. We will investigate how cultural institutions, artists, researchers, and people living with dementias are coming together to reframe the conversation around the topic of dementia, through arts-based approaches. The chapter will include an additional component which acknowledges the different cultural contexts within which the representation of dementia is constructed and defined. Whilst many people and organisations in countries such as the UK are striving to overcome communication challenges and create more dementia-inclusive societies, in other cultures, language continues to act as a barrier to equality. We will hear from individuals who are striving to change this.

Welcome to Week 4

In this final week of the course, Kailey Nolan, Communications Manager for Created Out of Mind, provides an overview of the week’s content, introducing this week’s key concepts and questions.

This week’s topics will explore:

  • How can the arts establish new ways of communicating about the dementias to enrich the narrative about the condition?

  • How can the arts help to reduce the social stigma that surrounds the dementias?

  • How does language, both verbal and non-verbal, shape how we think about and interact with people living with a dementia?

  • How can the arts offer new ways of articulating different dementia experiences and help to remove barriers to communication for people living with a dementia?

  • How are the dementias represented in literature, the media, clinical accounts and care settings?

  • How are various institutions and practitioners coming together to reframe the conversation around the topic of dementia through arts-based approaches?

  • What are some of the different cultural contexts in which the representations of dementia are constructed and defined?

CREDITS We would like to extend a special thank you to the following individuals and organisations for providing supplementary footage and images for this video: * Dementia Engagement and Empowerment Project (DEEP) * ‘Once Upon a Time’ - Josh Grigg / Spare Tyre * Ben Gilbert/ Wellcome.
The background music to this Welcome to Week 4 video comes from Hannah Peel’s instrumental version of ‘Conversations’, taken from her album Awake But Always Dreaming, which was written as a way of addressing, exploring and coming to terms with her grandmother’s dementia. About this piece of music, Hannah says: ‘This was written directly after a conversation with my grandmother. It was the same one that we had every time I visited to explain who my family and I are. I went away in tears and my throat choking each time. For me, as I lived further away, I would visit less frequently which would mean that I could see the effects of dementia much more acutely with each visit. It was beyond painful and something I’ll never forget but it has equipped me with a mechanism for coping, that’s why I wrote it. More should be done to help other people dealing with the caring side of this condition, just how to cope and understand better. My father deserves a knighthood for his patience and understanding. I hope in some small way this record burns the spotlight brighter and in my own modest way, it helps someone else.’

Share this video:

This video is from the free online course:

Dementia and the Arts: Sharing Practice, Developing Understanding and Enhancing Lives

UCL (University College London)