Facing the Aphasia Condition

The main objective of this proposal is to discuss the relevance and impact of social networks in which aphasic subjects are immersed, mainly regarding family members, caretakers, and health systems. Aphasia is the linguistic condition that frequently follows a neurological episode (an ictus, a tumor, a traumatic injury, and so on). Besides medical and psychological assistance, we argue that aphasics must be faced with empathy in order to be understood and to express their subjectivity. Despite their condition, they must be recognized as competent individuals who have something to say. Tt is imperative for the success of their rehabilitation process to encounter attentive and predisposed interlocutors who will assist them in developing adaptive strategies. In such social approach to understanding aphasia, treatment is comprehended as a collaborative and conversational process of people, as it “should not be a process of just language and communication repair, but of facilitating purpose and meaning in life and strengthening ties with others in those natural life contexts that matter the most” (Lyon, 1999, p. 689). In the context of this reflection, I present the ethical and theoretical guidelines of the work developed by the research group I lead (GELEP – Study Group of Language in Aging and in Pathologies) at the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), São Paulo, Brazil. CCA (Center for People with Aphasia) has been the locus for our research in the field of Neurolinguistics for more than thirty years and also an institutional space to develop community extension programs.


Social and Cultural Perspectives on Aging

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

  • Prof. Rosana Novaes Pinto
    • Associate Professor II, Department of Linguistics, State university of Campinas, Brazil São Paulo, Brazil
    • I am an Associate Professor (II - Livre Docente) and University Scholar in the Department of Linguistics at the Language Studies Institute, State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), São Paulo, Brazil. I am the leader of a Research Group - GELEP (Group of Studies of Language in Aging and in Pathologies) and also coordinate the Group 3 of CCA (Centro de Convivência de Afásicos) - an aphasics' center for language activities.  My research interests include language in normal and in pathological states, focused on aphasia; normal and pathological aging; methodological and ethical issues regarding evaluation and follow up of aphasic subjects. Recent publications include: Qualitative Research in Neurolinguistics: the case of Word Finding Difficulties and Related phenomena (2017). The aphasic utterance: A significal approach (2013); Bakhtinian ethics in the light of contemporary problems: Ponzio and The Art of Listening (2013); The contributions of concepts developed by the Circle of Bakhtin to the description and the analysis of aphasic subjects’utterances (2013); The concept of fluency in the studies of aphasia (2012); A social-cultural approach to aphasia: contributions from the work developed at a center for aphasic subjects (2012); Brain, language and cognitive functioning in the socio-historical-cultural perspective: inferences from the study of aphasias (2012). I have also been the director of the journal Cadernos de Estudos Linguisticos (CEL) from 2016-2018 and president of GEL (Grupo de Estudos Linguísticos do Estado de S. Paulo) from 2013 to 2015.