Citizenship and authenticity in dementia: A scoping review

Maturitas. 2019 Jul;125:11-16. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2019.04.001. Epub 2019 Apr 2.


This is a scoping review of the notions of authenticity and citizenship in the context of understanding dementia. Authenticity suggests being true to yourself. Social citizenship suggests engagement, relationships and rights. The literature which links authenticity to dementia is scanty, albeit the notion suggests numerous possibilities. The literature on citizenship and dementia is more extensive. After some conceptual discussion, the literature is reviewed. The authenticity literature focuses on people being themselves, on partnerships and on decision-making. There is also literature on how carers of people living with dementia might be more authentic or genuine. Over against the possibility that the demands of citizenship might swamp the drive to individual authenticity, the review shows that, in line with authenticity being a social virtue, it is implied or conveyed by much of the literature on citizenship, in particular by the characterization of citizenship in terms of coherence (and thus narrative), vitality, maturity and depth.

Keywords: Authenticity; Carers; Dementia; Narrative; Social citizenship.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Caregivers*
  • Decision Making*
  • Dementia / epidemiology*
  • Dementia / physiopathology
  • Home Nursing
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Personal Autonomy*
  • Personhood*
  • Psychological Distance
  • Social Behavior
  • Social Environment
  • Social Support