Dementia-compromised language conflict and aggression
  • ISSN 2213-1272
  • E-ISSN: 2213-1280
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


Clinically, frontotemporal dementia (FTD) is described as primarily affecting personality and interpersonal conduct and resulting in social behavioral disruptions, thus often giving rise to interpersonal conflict. Conflict behavior in both typical and dementia populations is frequently identified as explicit physical and verbal acts such as assault, yelling or insulting, and research often situates conflict and collaboration as opposing dimensions. The premise of this article is to examine the unfolding of moments in which individuals diagnosed with FTD and their carers demonstrate opposing orientations towards an activity in real time interaction: A home nurse needing to fulfill an institutional agenda — taking sitting blood pressure — seeks the cooperation from an individual who, in attempting to lie down, interferes with this agenda. These moments constitute sources of interactional conflict that carers attempt to resolve. However, often conflict behavior and cooperative behavior are not neatly teased apart; for instance, individuals often display conflicting orientations towards an overarching or guiding activity while cooperating in more immediate and discrete interactional tasks. These verbal/nonverbal conflicts are not large acts of aggression; rather, they may be viewed as arising within the mundane moments of life that individuals face in everyday contexts and frequently.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Algase, Donna L. , Cornelia Beck , Ann Whall , Stanley Berent , Kathy Richards , and Elizabeth Beattie
    1996 “Need-driven Dementia-compromised Behavior: An Alternative View of Disruptive Behavior.” American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease11(6): 10–19. doi: 10.1177/153331759601100603
    https://doi.org/10.1177/153331759601100603 [Google Scholar]
  2. Angouri, Jo , and Miriam A. Locher
    2012 “Theorising Disagreement.” Journal of Pragmatics44: 1549–1553. doi: 10.1016/j.pragma.2012.06.011
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pragma.2012.06.011 [Google Scholar]
  3. Bach, Kent
    2005 “Context Ex Machina.” InSemantics Versus Pragmatics, edited by Zoltan Gendler Szabo , 15–44. Oxford: Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251520.003.0002
    https://doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199251520.003.0002 [Google Scholar]
  4. Bozeat, Sasha , Carol A. Gregory , Matthew A. Lambon Ralph , and John R. Hodges
    2000 “Which Neuropsychiatric and Behavioural Features Distinguish Frontal and Temporal Variants of Frontotemporal Dementia from Alzheimer’s Disease?” Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry69: 178–186. doi: 10.1136/jnnp.69.2.178
    https://doi.org/10.1136/jnnp.69.2.178 [Google Scholar]
  5. Cerejeira, Joaquim , L. Lagarto , and Elizabeta B. Mukaetova-Ladinska
    2012 “Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia.” Frontiers in Neurology3 (73): 1–21. doi: 10.3389/fneur.2012.00073
    https://doi.org/10.3389/fneur.2012.00073 [Google Scholar]
  6. Clayman, Steven
    2002 “Disagreements and Third Parties: Dilemmas of Neutralism in Panel News Interviews.” Journal of Pragmatics34: 1385–1401. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(02)00070‑X
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(02)00070-X [Google Scholar]
  7. Cohen-Mansfield, Jiska
    1999 “Measurement of Inappropriate Behavior Associated with Dementia.” Journal of Gerontological Nursing25: 42–51. doi: 10.3928/0098‑9134‑19990201‑08
    https://doi.org/10.3928/0098-9134-19990201-08 [Google Scholar]
  8. 2008 “Agitated Behavior in Persons with Dementia: The Relationship between Type of Behavior, its Frequency, and its Disruptiveness.” Journal of Psychiatric Research43 (1): 64–69. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2008.02.003
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychires.2008.02.003 [Google Scholar]
  9. Cohen-Mansfield, Jiska , and N. Billig
    1986 “Agitated Behaviors in the Elderly: A Conceptual Review.” Journal of the American Geriatrics Society34: 711–721. doi: 10.1111/j.1532‑5415.1986.tb04302.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1532-5415.1986.tb04302.x [Google Scholar]
  10. Culpeper, Jonathan , Derek Bousfield , and Anne Wichmann
    2003 “Impoliteness Revisited: With Special Reference to Dynamic and Prosodic Aspects.” Journal of Pragmatics35: 1545–1579. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(02)00118‑2
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(02)00118-2 [Google Scholar]
  11. Diehl-Schmid, Janine , Susanne Bornshein , Corina Pohl , Hans Forstl , Alexander Kurz , and Thomas Jahn
    2011 Cognitive Decline in the Behavioral Variant of Frontotemporal Dementia. International Psychogeriatrics23 (2): 230–237. doi: 10.1017/S104161021000164X
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S104161021000164X [Google Scholar]
  12. Gilley, D.W. , J.L. Bienias , R.S. Wilson , D.A. Bennett , T.L. Beck , and D.A. Evans
    2004 “Influence of Behavioral Symptoms on Rates of Institutionalization for Persons with Alzheimer’s Disease.” Psychological Medicine6 (6): 1129–1135. doi: 10.1017/S0033291703001831
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S0033291703001831 [Google Scholar]
  13. Grice, Paul H
    1975 Logic and conversation. InStudies in Syntax and Semantics, vol. III: Speech Acts, edited by Peter Cole and Jerry L. Morgan , 41–59. New York: Academic Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. Gruber, Helmut
    2001 “Questions and Strategic Orientation in Verbal Conflict Sequences.” Journal of Pragmatics33: 1815–1857. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(00)00083‑7
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(00)00083-7 [Google Scholar]
  15. Hamilton, Mark. A
    2012 “Verbal Aggression: Understanding the Psychological Antecedents and Social Consequences.” Language and Social Psychology31 (1): 5–12. doi: 10.1177/0261927X11425032
    https://doi.org/10.1177/0261927X11425032 [Google Scholar]
  16. Hepburn, Alexa , and Galina B. Bolden
    2013 “The Conversation Analysis Approach to Transcription.” InThe Handbook of Conversation Analysis, edited by Jack Sidnell , and Tanya Stivers , 57–76. Malden, MA: Wiley Blackwell.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Heritage, John
    2001 “Goffman, Garfinkel and Conversation Analysis.” InDiscourse, Theory and Practice, edited by Margaret Wetherell , Stephanie Taylor , and Simeon J. Yates , 47–56. London: Sage.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. 2002 “The Limits of Questioning: Negative Interrogatives and Hostile Question Content.” Journal of Pragmatics34: 1427–1446. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(02)00072‑3
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(02)00072-3 [Google Scholar]
  19. Herrmann, Nathan
    2001 “Recommendations for the Management of Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia.” The Canadian Journal of Neurological Sciences28 (Suppl. 1): S96–S107. doi: 10.1017/S0317167100001268
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S0317167100001268 [Google Scholar]
  20. Jefferson, Gail
    2004 “Glossary of Transcript Symbols with an Introduction.” InConversation Analysis: Studies from the First Generation, edited by Gene H. Lerner , 13–31. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. doi: 10.1075/pbns.125.02jef
    https://doi.org/10.1075/pbns.125.02jef [Google Scholar]
  21. Kangasharju, Helena
    2002 “Alignment in Disagreement: Forming Oppositional Alliances in Committee Meetings.” Journal of Pragmatics34: 1447–1471. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(02)00073‑5
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(02)00073-5 [Google Scholar]
  22. Kipps, Christopher , Jonathon A. Knibb , and John R. Hodges
    2007 “Clinical Presentations of Frontotemporal Dementia.” InFrontotemporal Dementia Syndrome, edited by John R. Hodges , 38–79. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Mates, Andrea W. , Lisa Mikesell , and Michael S. Smith
    (eds.) 2010Language, Interaction and Frontotemporal Dementia: Reverse Engineering the Social Mind. London: Equinox.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. Maynard, Douglas
    1988 “Language, Interaction and Social Problems.” Social Problems35 (4): 311–334. doi: 10.2307/800590
    https://doi.org/10.2307/800590 [Google Scholar]
  25. Mendez, Mario F. , Sylvia S. Fong , Jill S. Shapira , Elvira E. Jimenez , Natalie C. Kaiser , Sarah A. Kremen , and Po-Heng Tsai
    2014 “Observation of Social behavior in Frontotemporal Dementia.” American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias29 (3): 215–221. doi: 10.1177/1533317513517035
    https://doi.org/10.1177/1533317513517035 [Google Scholar]
  26. Mendez, Mario F. , and Jill S. Shapira
    2005 “Loss of Insight and Functional Neuroimaging in Frontotemporal Dementia.” Journal of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences17: 413–416. doi: 10.1176/jnp.17.3.413
    https://doi.org/10.1176/jnp.17.3.413 [Google Scholar]
  27. Mikesell, Lisa
    2009 “Conversational Practices of a Frontotemporal Dementia Patient and his Interlocutors.” Research on Language and Social Interaction42 (2): 135–162. doi: 10.1080/08351810902864552
    https://doi.org/10.1080/08351810902864552 [Google Scholar]
  28. 2010a “Repetitional Response in Frontotemporal Dementia Discourse: Asserting Agency or Demonstrating Confusion?” Discourse Studies12 (4): 465–500. doi: 10.1177/1461445610370127
    https://doi.org/10.1177/1461445610370127 [Google Scholar]
  29. 2010b “Examining Perseverative Behaviors of a Frontotemporal Dementia Patient and Caregiver Responses: The Benefits of Observing Ordinary Interactions and Reflections on Caregiver Stress.” InDiscourse, Sociality and Frontotemporal Dementia: Reverse Engineering the Social Mind, edited by Andrea W. Mates , Lisa Mikesell , and Michael S. Smith , 85–113. London: Equinox.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. 2014 “Conflicting Demonstrations of Understanding in Interactions with Individuals with Frontotemporal Dementia: Considering Cognitive Resources and their Implications for Caring and Communication.” InDialogue and Dementia: Cognitive and Communicative Resources for Engagement, edited by Robert Schrauf , and Nicole Muller , 147–180. New York: Psychology Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  31. .In press. “The Use of Directives to Repair Embodied (Mis)Understandings in Interactions with Individuals Diagnosed with Frontotemporal Dementia.” Research on Language and Social Interaction49 (3).
    [Google Scholar]
  32. Mioshi, E. , S. Hsieh , S. Savage , M. Hornberger , and John R. Hodges
    2010 “Clinical Staging and Disease Progression in Frontotemporal Dementia.” Neurology74: 1691–1597. doi: 10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181e04070
    https://doi.org/10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181e04070 [Google Scholar]
  33. Neary, David , Julie S. Snowden , L. Gustafson , U. Passant , D. Stuss , S. Black , M. Freedman , A. Kertesz , P.H. Robert , M. Albert , K. Boone , B.L. Miller , J. Cummings , and D.F. Benson
    1998 “Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration: A Consensus on Clinical Diagnostic Criteria.” Neurology51: 1546–1554. doi: 10.1212/WNL.51.6.1546
    https://doi.org/10.1212/WNL.51.6.1546 [Google Scholar]
  34. Neary, David , Julie Snowden , and David Mann
    2005 “Frontotemporal Dementia.” The Lancet Neurology4 (11): 771–780. doi: 10.1016/S1474‑4422(05)70223‑4
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S1474-4422(05)70223-4 [Google Scholar]
  35. Pomerantz, Anita , and Barbara J. Fehr
    2007 “Conversation Analysis: An Approach to the Study of Social Action as Sense Making Practices.” InDiscourse as Social Interaction, edited by Teun A. van Dijk , 64–91. Los Angeles: Sage.
    [Google Scholar]
  36. Pondy, Louis R
    1967 “Organizational Conflict: Concepts and Models.” Administrative Science Quarterly12: 296–320. doi: 10.2307/2391553
    https://doi.org/10.2307/2391553 [Google Scholar]
  37. Putnam, L. Linda , and Marshall S. Poole
    1987 “Conflict and Negotiation.” InHandbook of Organizational Communication: An Interdisciplinary Perspective, edited by Frederic M. Jablin , Linda L. Putnam , Karlene Roberts , and Lyman Porter , 549–599. Newbury Park: Sage
    [Google Scholar]
  38. Sacks, Harvey
    1973 “Current Research in Conversation Analysis: The Preference for Agreement.” Paper presented at theLinguistic Society of American Summer Institute. Ann Arbor, MI.
    [Google Scholar]
  39. Sarangi, Srikant K. , and Stefaan Slembrouck
    1992 “Non-Cooperation in Communication: A Reassessment of Gricean Pragmatics.” Journal of Pragmatics17: 117–154. doi: 10.1016/0378‑2166(92)90037‑C
    https://doi.org/10.1016/0378-2166(92)90037-C [Google Scholar]
  40. Smith, Michael. S
    2010 “Exploring the Moral Basis of Social Action in Frontotemporal Dementia.” InDiscourse, Sociality and Frontotemporal Dementia: Reverse Engineering the Social Mind, edited by Andrea W. Mates , Lisa Mikesell , and Michael S. Smith , 49–84. London: Equinox.
    [Google Scholar]
  41. Stivers, Tanya
    2005 “Modified Repeats: One Method for Asserting Primary Rights from Second Position.” Research on Language and Social Interaction38 (2): 131–158. doi: 10.1207/s15327973rlsi3802_1
    https://doi.org/10.1207/s15327973rlsi3802_1 [Google Scholar]
  42. Teri, Linda , Peter Rabins , Peter Whitehouse , Leonard Berg , Barry Reisberg , Trey Sunderland , Burr Eichelman , and Creighton Phelps
    1992 “Management of Behavior Disturbance in Alzheimer Disease: Current Knowledge and Future Directions.” Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders6 (2): 77–88. doi: 10.1097/00002093‑199206020‑00003
    https://doi.org/10.1097/00002093-199206020-00003 [Google Scholar]
  43. Walker, Alexander J. , Susanne Meares , Perminder S. Sachdev , and Henry Brodaty
    2005 “The Differentiation of Mild Frontotemporal Dementia from Alzheimer’s Disease and Health Aging by Neuropsychological Tests.” International Psychogeriatrics17: 57–68. doi: 10.1017/S1041610204000778
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S1041610204000778 [Google Scholar]
  44. Yaeger-Dror, Malcah
    2002 “Introduction to Special Issue.” Journal of Pragmatics34: 1333–1343. doi: 10.1016/S0378‑2166(02)00068‑1
    https://doi.org/10.1016/S0378-2166(02)00068-1 [Google Scholar]
  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): collaboration; conflict; conversation analysis; engagement; frontotemporal dementia
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error