To thine own self be true. Reflections on authenticity, citizenship and dementia

To thine own self be true. Reflections on authenticity, citizenship and dementia presented by Professor Julian Hughes, Rice professor of Old Age Psychiatry University of Bristol.

About the Lecture



15 August 2019

5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

Function Room, Level 4, St.Vincent's Clinic, 438 Victoria Street, Darlinghurst, NSW

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2019 Plunkett Lecture - Professor Julian Hughes

This annual lecture is hosted by the Plunkett Centre for Ethics (a joint centre of ACU, St.Vincent's Health Network and Calvary Health Care).

What is it to 'live well' with dementia?  Is authenticity possible in dementia? Can it be nurtured and maintained?  If it is lost or reduced, can it be restored?   Is it a goal of treatment and care?  If so, how is the capacity to be 'one's best self' to be fostered in the treatment and care of people with cognitive impairment?  Can people with dementia be 'citizens of the world'?

In this lecture, the philosopher and psychiatrist, Julian Hughes, once described as 'the most notable polymath'* in the field of dementia care, will address a range of conceptual and practical issues which arise in the care of people with dementia.

The conceptual issues focus on authenticity and citizenship. Drawing on recent research, both concepts will be explored, particularly from a social perspective. Other issues to be touched upon will include debates about capacity, best interests, agency, autonomy, and the importance of narratives when we contemplate our lives.
The practical issues will include the significance of place of residence, the management of behaviours that are found challenging (including the need for forced care, covert and psychotropic medication) as well as the challenge of managing changing personal relations in a reasonable way.

*'the most notable polymath' - from John Killick (2017) The Story of Dementia. Edinburgh: Luath Press; pp. 100-101.

About the Plunket Centre for Ethics

About the Lecture 

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