Back in the eighties, astronomer Carl Sagan established a space advocacy group called The Planetary Society, based in Pasadena, California. Author Paul Bracken was the society's representative in Ireland, and he became known as a leading planetary science educator and evangelist. In 1993, Bracken was recognized by The Planetary Society's founders, for his "extraordinary initiative and effort in support of the exploration of the solar system and the search for extraterrestrial life."
Gilgamesh in the 21st Century
"Must I die?" asked Gilgamesh. Forty five centuries later, we're still asking the same question. Science writer Paul Bracken embarks on a lighthearted assessment of the human condition, to explore what it means to be mortal, and what our fate may be. This scientific reimagining of the ancient Gilgamesh quest delves into a multitude of topics including the origin of life, the workings of the human mind, and the possibilities for life prolongation.
The ancient Gilgamesh was so distraught at the death of his friend Enkidu, and so sickened by the knowledge that he too would die, that he rebelled against his fate and set out on a search for salvation. Likewise, at the age of eleven, Bracken wondered if there might be a way to bring his grandfather back from the dead and has been pondering this question ever since. Is death a problem to be solved, or is it an essential aspect of our humanity?