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The Alzheimer Conundrum by Margaret Lock

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Chapter 3

Paths to Alzheimer Prevention

Although it was not until two or three years later that the Alzheimer symptoms became fully apparent, I have sometimes wondered if Iris knew that her own career as a novelist was nearly over.

—John Bayley, Iris: A Memoir of Iris Murdoch1

The idea of being “predisposed” to an illness stems from the early 18th century, when discussion among medical practitioners and lay people alike about the “constitution” of individuals and its relation to disease vulnerability began to take place.2 However, François Ewald, a political scientist, argues that the “philosophy of risk” as we understand it today is very much a product of contemporary society—a radical epistemological transformation involving a “mutation” in ...

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