Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Who are we in the end?

The final stage of Alzheimer’s ends with when the vast majority of the cells in the cerebral hemispheres burning out, with the exception of the visual and motor cortex.
 During this final stage some patients will become totally unresponsive, and remain until death in a vegetative state. In other cases it is normal for the subjects of STAD to be seen pacing around absently, due to the still functioning visual and motor skills.
What we don't know about the personal experience in the throes of Alzheimer's is vast. Who's to say what constitutes as a life, a reality, a sense of being.
Baudrilllard states that to come into "hyperreality" there must be representation preceding the real, a reversal. We are confined by whatever reality we inhabit, weather shared or not. Is it possible that Alzheimer's is the ultimate hyperreality? In this disease there is no other instance, no other alternative. What is real for the individual, in this case, is the ultimate fake out. There is no "real" representation is all that remains:

And for the same reason, although these general things, to wit,[a body], eyes, a head, hands, and such like, may
be imaginary, we are bound at the same time to
confess that there are at least some other objects
yet more simple and more universal, which are
real and true; and of these just in the same way
as with certain real colours, all these images of
things which dwell in our thoughts, whether true
and real or false and fantastic, are formed.
To such a class of things pertains corporeal(Descartes 18).

1 comment:

  1. Ok, so this is underwhelming. I want to hear more. More about what you think this means for Alzheimer's care. More of how it relates to current research about Alzheimer's treatment and neurology. More of what you believe the benefit is (for patients? for students? for yourself?) to connecting this disease with the critical theory and philosophy. With a really killer intro and a really killer final page-- and some better organizing in between in terms of the blog chronology--this could be a really exciting project! Needs some work, but I actually hope you do it, and put this thing out into the world!