Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Caregiver: A Life With Alzheimer's -- New Book

See also:
-- 'Longevity Science' blog
-- 'Health Studies' blog


Here is a new book for discussion:

The Caregiver: A Life With Alzheimer's
(The Culture and Politics of Health Care Work)

by Aaron Alterra and Arthur Kleinman (Paperback - Jan 2008)

Book Description provided by the Publisher ( ILR Press):

Aaron and Stella Alterra had been married for more than sixty years when Aaron began to notice puzzling lapses in his wife's memory. Innocuous at first, they became more severe and more alarming. After a series of appointments and tests, the Alterras were informed that Stella was one of the more than 4.5 million Americans with Alzheimer's disease. Combining medical research on the disease and often-painful anecdotes of memory loss, deteriorating motor functions, personality shifts, support-group and daycare experiences, and drug trials, Alterra chronicles his transformation from husband to caregiver after his wife's diagnosis. More than a chronology of one family's experience of Alzheimer's disease, The Caregiver is an intelligent, beautifully reflective testimony to how family members turned caregivers become the ultimate advocates for their loved ones in the face of a disease with no cure.

From the Back Cover
"A touchingly exact and superbly composed account written by a real writer. This is the best and most expert book on Alzheimer's that I have read and it should be closely studied by every caregiver."--John Bayley, author of Iris: A Memoir of Iris Murdoch

"The Caregiver is one of the few examples of the lived experience of Alzheimer's disease from the perspective of a loving, reflective, and articulate husband. Aaron Alterra paints a beautiful and honest picture of how Alzheimer's disease changed one family's world, a literate world full of life, music, art, and words. His story will touch physicians, nurses, social workers, physical therapists, psychologists, and healers of all sorts who struggle to assist families in their journey with this disease."--Patricia G. Archbold, Building Academic Geriatric Nursing Capacity Scholars Program, American Academy of Nursing

About the Authors
Aaron Alterra is a pseudonym for E. S. Goldman, an award-winning fiction writer who publishes frequently in the Atlantic; he has published a novel and two volumes of short stories and lives on Cape Cod. Arthur Kleinman is Esther and Sidney Rabb Professor of Anthropology, Professor of Medical Anthropology, Professor of Psychiatry, and Curator of Medical Anthropology in the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology at Harvard University. His books include Patients and Healers in the Context of Culture and The Illness Narratives.

Key words:
New books, aging, ageing, longevity, gerontology, gerontological, geriatrics, geriatric, senescence, anti-aging, anti-ageing, rejuvenation, life-extension, immortality, Caregiver, Life With Alzheimer's, Health Care Work, Aaron Alterra, Arthur Kleinman, E. S. Goldman, ILR Press, Alzheimer's disease

Do you have any comments on this new book?
Post them below!

1 comment:

Carol D. O'Dell said...

Thanks for bringing this book to my attention. As a caregiver and sandwich generation-er (my mom had Parkinson's and Alzheimer's), what I find I haven't thought of as much is spousal caregiving.
When do we veer away from being a wife/husband--and become more of a caregiver?
Sounds like an interesting read.

~Carol D. O'Dell
Author of Mothering Mother; A Daughter's Humorous and Heartbreaking Memoir,

available on Amazon and in most bookstores