Alzheimer’s Disease, Media Representations and the Politics by Megan-Jane Johnstone

By Megan-Jane Johnstone

Drawing on vast info together with information media experiences and commentaries, documentaries, courts and court docket experiences, movies, web pages, specialist literature and govt and non-government firms, this ebook explores the 'Alzheimerisation' of the euthanasia debate, analyzing the shift in recent times in public attitudes in the direction of the desirability and ethical permissibility of euthanasia as an end-of-life 'solution' for individuals residing with the affliction - not only at its finish level, but in addition at previous phases. With recognition to media representations and public understandings of Alzheimer's disorder, Alzheimer's sickness, Media Representations and the Politics of Euthanasia sheds mild at the approaches contributing to those adjustments in public opinion, investigating the drivers of vexed political debate surrounding the difficulty and interpreting the way within which either side of the euthanasia debate mobilise help, painting their rivals and utilize media applied sciences to border the phrases of discourse.

Paving the best way for a better point of highbrow honesty with reference to a topic sporting major coverage implications, this e-book might be of curiosity to students of media and conversation, social pursuits and political conversation, and the sociology of future health and medication, in addition to researchers and execs within the fields of palliative and finish of existence care.

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Additional resources for Alzheimer’s Disease, Media Representations and the Politics of Euthanasia: Constructing Risk and Selling Death in an Ageing Society

Sample text

The use of fear triggering metaphorical thinking about Alzheimer’s disease is widespread. Some notable examples of this can be found in the news media and television documentary reportage of the notable medically assisted suicide and lay ‘mercy killing’ cases of Janet Atkins (USA) (the first patient to be assisted to die by Dr Jack Kevorkian), Raymond Riordan (Australia, QLD), Rex Law (NZ), and Graeme Wylie1 (Australia, NSW): Janet Atkins (1990 – USA): ‘She was upset because she was losing her mind and her mind was everything to her’ (Egan 1990).

The potent use of branding, badging and re-badging key messages, bandwagoning, interactive media, and patent commercial advertising are also explored. An examination of the latter will include a brief discussion on the unprecedented campaign to advertise euthanasia in Australia (spearheaded in 2010 by the ABC-television program The Gruen Transfer and ‘The Pitch’ for an advertisement to sell ‘compulsory euthanasia for the over 80s’). Finally, the salient and long lasting (‘cultivation’ and ‘sleeper’) effects of using media value-frames and psychological priming (called ‘media priming’) and their subconscious influence on public opinions and attitudes toward euthanasia will be explored.

The answer has to be both yes and no’ (Kass, Commentator). 4 Use of the Alzheimer metaphor and related frames (Professional-academic literature) Loss of personhood and moral membership: ‘There will be cases like that of the profoundly and permanently demented individual with Alzheimer’s dementia, where neurological damage has destroyed a person, and all that survives is a terminally ill nonperson with what we may call radically truncated interests … our obligations to such a being are at best quite limited because of the radically truncated character of its [sic] interests’ (Buchanan 1988: 285 and 286).

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