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International Dementia Conference
International Dementia Conference
International Dementia Conference
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The Language My Mother Speaks

Presentation Description

The Language My Mother Speaks


The Language My Mother Speaks was a theatre installation created by theatre artist Samantha Bews as part of the At Home Residency program at the Phee Broadway Theatre, Castlemaine. The installation explored questions of consciousness in a person with advanced dementia.


In the final year of her life Lindsay could no longer see, speak, sit or feed herself independently. And yet the artist contests that her mother was very much alive. However, in societies dominated by progress, function and independence, we have lost the ability to listen to the subtle yet profound complexities of being. This has significant implications for people with dementia as more countries in the West move toward legalizing euthanasia and assisted dying.


In this presentation Samantha Bews will show a short documentary video of the installation, then speak about how the many elements of this piece of theatre worked together to express some of the 'inarticulable aspects of being human', and highlight a language that is beyond the limits of cognitive speech₁ .


₁ John Swinton email correspondence

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