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News & Notes
A Look Back for Our 50th Year of PublicationDecember 1, 2023
Uniforms, Shaving, and FuelNovember 22, 2023
Anders Carlson-Wee on Dumpster Diving in a Culture of WasteBy Nancy Holochwost, Associate Editor • November 9, 2023
Lynn Casteel Harper On New Ways Of Understanding Dementia
Askey: How do you think we will look back on our current treatment of people with dementia?
Harper: I think we will see how incomplete our approach was: The obsession with a cure. The overuse of psychotropic medications to “manage distressing behaviors.” Only something like 10 percent of that is necessary, research shows. A lot of those psychotropic medications are dangerous for people living with dementia.
I had thought nobody understood dark matter — that it was, fundamentally, an encapsulation of all we didn’t know. But it turned out other people’s lack of understanding took the form of complex theories, mathematical equations, computer programs that turned impenetrable data into different impenetrable data. Other people’s confusion was a castle you could live inside, a whole architecture of the unknown. My confusion was a wall I kept walking into.
I loved my father’s body. It worried me, too. . . . I didn’t know what polio was, but it sounded scary, and he had survived it. This helped form my view of him as someone who could survive almost anything. Like Wile E. Coyote, he might get hurt and maimed, but he never, ever gave up.