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Still Gloria: Personal Identity and Dementia

Posted by nte on April 4, 2017 in In Print

Baylis, F. (2017). Still Gloria: personal identity and dementia.International Journal of Feminist Approaches to Bioethics, 10(1):210-224.


Beverly Beckham (2008) writes in the Boston Globe in praise of Lisa Genova’s (2007) Still Alice: “You have to get this book. … I couldn’t put it down. …” After I read Still Alice, a book of fiction about an accomplished Harvard professor with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, I too wanted to tell everyone to get this book, but not because “I couldn’t put it down.” The first time I read it, I put it down several times to cry. It was too painful to read in one stretch. Years back, my mother, Gloria Baylis,1 had been diagnosed with vascular dementia, and recently there had been findings suggestive of an atypical presentation of Alzheimer’s disease. The story of Alice Howland, the Alice of Still Alice, was both too familiar (because of what I already knew), and too revealing (because of what I did not yet know).  [Read more]