A Work in Progress: Literature Which References Dementia


A few weeks back I asked friends and colleagues to send me through a list of literary texts, plays and films, (both fiction and non-fiction), which reference or reflect Dementia. I was kind of blown away by just how much is out there and wanted to compile a list in case it’s of use to anyone who’s working in the same areas I’m interested in. This is most definitely a work in progress and I’m keen to add to it, and for it to be used as a resource for other. Please shoot me a wee email if you know of anything I’ve missed out on. (I’ll do my best to update the list). Some of the work on this list is absolutely fabulous and I’d thoroughly recommend taking a few hours out to read/watch/explore. I will say, as a bit of a caveat, not all of the examples listed are the best examples of good art or the most accurate depiction of living with Dementia BUT in the spirit of trying to be comprehensive, it’s good to have as full a list as possible. Hope this is helpful.

Prose Fiction:

  • Samantha Harvey – The Wilderness
  • Matthew Thomas – We Are Not Ourselves
  • Lisa Genova – Still Alice
  • Emma Healy – Elizabeth is Missing
  • Nicholas Sparks – The Notebook
  • Mordecia Richler – Barney’s Version
  • Jonathan Franzen – The Corrections
  • Alice Munro – “The Bear Came Over the Mountain” in Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Love, Marriage
  • Jan Carson – “Den and Estie Do Not Remember the Good Times” in Children’s Children
  • Anne Enright – “Three Stories About Love” in The Long Gaze Back

Prose Non-Fiction:

  • Sally Magnuson – Where Memories Go
  • Prof. June Andrews – The One Stop Guide To Dementia
  • Martin Slevin – The Little Girl in the Radiator: Mum, Alzheimer’s and Me 
  • Christine Bryden – Dancing With Dementia: My Story of Living Positively with Dementia
  • Susan Elliot- Wright – When Someone You Love Has Dementia
  • Lisa Jacobs Altman – Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Edward C. Willett – Diseases and People: Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Lia Mills – “Crib” in Winter Pages Vol. 1
  • Oliver James – Contented Dementia: 24-Hour Wraparound Care for Lifelong Well-being

Graphic Novels:

  • Paco Roca – Wrinkles


  • Edwin Mortier – The Stammered Songbook
  • Sarah Hesketh – The Hard Word Box
  • Leontia Flynn – Profit and Loss
  • Moyra Donaldson – Snakeskin Stilletos and Beneath the Ice


  • You’re Looking At Me Like I Live Here But I Don’t
  • Still Alice
  • Alive Inside
  • Away From Her
  • Lilting
  • Floride
  • Nebraska
  • The Iron Lady
  • The Notebook
  • The Savages
  • Barney’s Version



  • Florian Zeller – The Father
  • Glyn Maxwell – The Lion’s Face (Opera)
  • Nicola Wilson – Plaques and Tangles
  • Kim Noble – You’re Not Alone
  • Riding Lights Theatre Company – Simeon’s Watch
  • Barney Norris – Visitors
  • Trevor T. Smith – An Evening With Dementia
  • Ian Kershaw – Lost and Found
  • Tanya Meyers – Inside Out of Mind
  • Frank McGuinness – The Hanging Gardens

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