INTRODUCTION: COVID19 and Aging Bodies – What Do We Mean When We Say That Older Adults Are Most ‘Affected’ by COVID-19?


  • Christine Verbruggen Catholic University of Leuven, Faculty of Social Sciences, Dpt of Social and Cultural Anthropology




Author Biography

Christine Verbruggen, Catholic University of Leuven, Faculty of Social Sciences, Dpt of Social and Cultural Anthropology

I’m a trained social and cultural anthropologist (Catholic University of Leuven 2018) and historian (Catholic University of Leuven 2005) and work in the field of ageing, dementia and disability studies.  My master’s thesis explored dwelling as world-building of elderly in a Flemish nursing home for people with the diagnosis of dementia.  In my doctoral research (Catholic University of Leuven) I will engage in long-term participatory ethnographic research with community-dwelling elderly with dementia and aim to support our communication on their ongoing, rhizomatic narrative and inclusive trajectories through audiovisual media.  I am theoretically inspired by post-phenomenology, affect and materiality studies, feminist and posthuman theory and aim to bring this conceptual apparatus to bear on a more symmetrical, realist engagement with experiential differences, while reflexively relating to the politics and poetics of ageing, dementia and narrativity. 


Clotworthy, Amy. 2020. Empowering the Elderly? How ‘Help to Self-help’ Health Interventions Shape Ageing and Eldercare in Denmark. Transkript Verlag.

Fassin, Didier and Joanne Lipman. 2020. “An Unprecedented Health Crisis: Didier Fassin on the Global Response to the Covid Pandemic.” Institute for Advanced Studies Princeton. Accessed October 30, 2020.

Frank, Arthur W. 1991. At the Will of the Body: Reflections on Illness. Houghton Mifflin. Joseph, Suad. 2005. “The Kin Contract and Citizenship in the Middle East.” in Women and Citizenship edited by Marilyn Friedman, 149-169. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Mazzei, Lisa A. “Beyond an Easy Sense: A Diffractive Analysis.” Qualitative Inquiry 20(6): 742-746.






COVID-19 and Aging Bodies