• Remarkable advances in resuscitation medicine—the science of bringing people back to life—have blurred the once clear demarcation between life and death. Led by physicians across the globe, these developments are creating a paradigm shift in our understanding of death, challenging the perception that it is an implacable, terminal moment with the realization that death is a dynamic, biological process that is capable of being reversed.

    Today, people who would otherwise be pronounced "dead" are being brought back to life minutes to even hours after taking their last breath, with the possibility of leading healthy and normal lives. Moreover, many of these individuals, spanning all ages and backgrounds, are now reporting—in surprisingly vivid and similar accounts—their firsthand experience of what happened after their cardiac arrest, raising the unavoidable question of the continuity of consciousness beyond physical death.

    In light of these striking developments, this four-part series, moderated by Steve Paulson, journalist and Executive Producer of Wisconsin Public Radio's "To The Best Of Our Knowledge," will bring together leading experts at the crossroads of emergency medicine and neuroscience, psychology and law, anthropology and philosophy. They will explore this new frontier at the intersection of life and death, and its potential implications for how we understand and approach our mortality from scientific, ethical, and social perspectives.

    Registration Pricing — Individual Lecture Prices

    Member (including students) $5
    Nonmember $15
    Nonmember (Student / Postdoc / Resident / Fellow) $7

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  • Recent Events

    Wednesday, February 5, 2014 | 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

    Confronting Mortality: Faith and Meaning across Cultures

    Featuring: Allan Kellehear, Jeffrey J. Kripal, and Lani Leary
    Moderator: Steve Paulson

    How do we cope with the inevitability of our mortality? Experts in psychology, philosophy and sociology come together to share a multicultural perspective on death, dying, and what lies beyond.

    Wednesday, December 11, 2013 | 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

    Experiencing Death: An Insider's Perspective

    Featuring: Peter Fenwick, Kevin Nelson, Mary Neal, Sam Parnia
    Moderator: Steve Paulson

    What happens when we die? Recent medical advances have led to increased reports of "out of body" or "near death" experiences. Can these experiences be explained, and what can we learn from the transformative accounts of those who have nearly died?

    Tuesday, November 12, 2013 | 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

    Prolonging Life: Legal, Ethical, and Social Dilemmas

    Featuring: Christopher Comfort, Barbara Coombs Lee, Sam Shemie, and Mildred Z. Solomon
    Moderator: Steve Paulson

    As lifesaving technologies continue to advance, how should medical and financial resources be used to prolong the lives of patients suspended between life and death? Panelists weigh the legal, ethical, and social implications of such decisions.

    Wednesday, October 9, 2013 | 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM

    Reversing Death: The Miracle of Modern Medicine

    Featuring: Lance Becker, Stephan A. Mayer, and Sam Parnia
    Moderator: Steve Paulson

    Experts in emergency medicine and neurosurgery highlight new discoveries in resuscitation science that are helping to bring back those on the brink of death, and the difficult decisions and ethical dilemmas they confront during medical crises.

  • Presented by

    • The New York Academy of Sciences
    • Nour Foundation
    • To the Best of Our Knowledge

    Media Sponsor


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    Melinda Miller, PhD

    Program Manager, Life Sciences