Death Salon UK (2014)

Bart's Pathology Museum in London, host of Death Salon UK

Bart’s Pathology Museum in London, host of Death Salon UK

We’re bringing Death Salon across the pond to London, April 10-12 2014. There is a robust scholarly death community in the UK and we’re happy to have so many of its luminaries sharing with us in one place, while also bringing some of our favorite Americans in tow. Barts Pathology Museum curator Carla Valentine has done an amazing job leading the curation of these events in this beautiful museum space that is only occasionally open to the public. The talks on each day of the conference represent a part of the dying process; the first day is preparing for death, the second day is the act of dying itself, and the final day is after death. The lineup is subject to change and we should be adding some more speakers and maybe a surprise or two. Tickets are available for the full 3-day program or for individual days. Questions? Email us at info at deathsalon dot org.

Death Salon UK, held at Barts Pathology Museum, endeavours to engage various demographics (the public, medical students, historians etc) with aspects of death from a scholarly, medical-humanities perspective. The venue itself, which has grown into a shining example of public engagement, dictates the topics of this three-day conference. Within the walls of Barts Pathology Museum, history meets medicine, epidemiology meets art, and public health meets literature, meaning that death can be discussed from many angles, not just biomedical science alone. In fact, Death Salon is bringing the work of academics and death professionals to the public in an approachable but intellectual way while also encouraging interdisciplinary collaboration towards the goal of death acceptance and cultural understanding.

This three-day event will be split into three loose themes, ante-mortemperi-mortem and post-mortem and each day will run from approximately 9am (for registration) to 5:30pm. In this way talks are loosely categorised into preparation for death, occurrences around the time of death and events which manifest long after death. Those who purchase three-day tickets will be invited to attend a special ‘opening night’ evening event on Wed April 9th, 3-day ticket holders have been emailed details. 

Day 1 Ante-Mortem (10 April 2014)

Speakers include:

Dr Nathan Hefflick, School of Psychology (University of Kent) How death salience can have positive psychological effects when it motivates heightened engagement in life.

Rosie Inman-CookThe Natural Death Centre: “Lifting the Lid on Dying and Funerals”

Josefine Speyer (UKCP Reg Psychotherapist in private practice, and bereavement specialist) Co-Founder of The Natural Death centre and facilitator of The Death Cafe. “Facilitating Conversations about Death”

Simon Ferrar, Clandon Wood Natural Burial Site

Sarah Troop (US), Nourishing Death discusses the growing western interest in her culture’s Dia de los Muertos

Dr Eleanor Wilson, University of Nottingham: “Hospital Mortuaries: the blind spot of end of life care.”

Rebekah Reeve-Jones and Zoe McLean “Keepsakes of the Dead” Shrine Making

Dr David J Wilkinson, Emeritus Consultant Anaesthetist, St. Bartholomew’s Hospital, and President of World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists: “Looking dead may not be the same as being dead”

Keynote Speaker: Death Salon director Megan Rosenbloom (US) “A History of the Fear of Premature Burial”

Day 2 Peri-Mortem (11 April 2014)

Speakers include:

Dr Sarah Yardley (Keele University)”Are autopsies a missed educational opportunity to learn core palliative care principles?”

Dr Amanda Jeffery (Home Office Reg. Forensic Pathologist) will talk about CT Scanning at Autopsy (or virtual autopsy) and the most recent findings

Kristoffer Hughes, Author and Anatomical Pathology Technician: “Servants of the Reaper: A History of Mortuary Ritual and Practice”

Dr Alan Bates Hon. Senior Lecturer, Dept. Cellular Pathology, Royal Free Hospital “Victorian Anatomy Museums”

Annie Broadbent – “We Need to Talk About Grief” – grief and how people respond to those experiencing it

Kirsty McNally – NHS Blood and Transplant – Organ Donation

John Clarke – “From Here to Eternity: The Necropolis Railway and the Brookwood Cemetery”

Nicolas Wheatley (MSc, Death and Society) and the “Journey’s End” Train Set

Dr Cathy Molyneux, QMUL director of Anatomical Studies – A History of the Dissection Room

Keynote Speaker: Dr Lindsey Fitzharris, The Chirurgeon’s Apprentice

Day 3 Post-Mortem (12 April 2014)

Speakers include:

Dr John Troyer “The Centre for Death and Society” at the University of Bath will discuss dead body disposal technology, the future of death, and the future of death technology

 Dr Anastasia Tsaliki (research area Funerary & Biological Archaeology/Forensic Anthropology) “Who is Afraid of the Undead?: A Discussion of Unusual Burial Practices and Necrophobia”

Katherine Crouch “Disturbing the Death/The Disturbing Dead” PhD research on attitudes towards the excavation, curation and display of archaeological human remains and the role of mortuary archaeology in contemporary british culture”

Prof. Lisa Downing – Professor of French Discourses of Sexuality, and author of “Desiring the Dead: Cinematic representations of the necrophilia/aesthetic corpse trope”

Valentina Lari, artist, “Stillness and Whispers” Victorian post-mortem photography and modern day comparisons as well as difficulties encountered during filming of The Defomirty of Beauty at Mutter Museum

Brian Parsons “Funeral Practices in the UK: 150 Years of Change”

Joshua Graham Comparitive Ethnography of English and Americal Funeral Food Practices

Art Macabre Death Drawing Salon – Founder Nikki Shaill explores the relationship between the nude figure and death in art. there will be a chance to participate in a death-drawing class – all materials provided

Dr. Paul Koudounaris: Bolivian Skull Rituals

Keynote Speaker: Death Salon co-founder Caitlin Doughty, The Order of the Good Death & Ask a Mortician (US)

Registration 9:15-9:45, morning break 10:45, lunch 12:30-13:30, afternoon break 15:00

**Refunds for the event unavailable after April 1st**

Death Salon UK organizers Dr. Lindsey Fitzharris, Carla Valentine, Megan Rosenbloom & Caitlin Doughty

Death Salon UK organizers Dr. Lindsey Fitzharris, Carla Valentine, Megan Rosenbloom & Caitlin Doughty

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