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PHILADELPHIA – April 19, 2013
On the 70th anniversary of the first intentional LSD trip, a compelling new documentary film about the academic study of psychedelic drugs is released.
“Psychedemia” was the first academic conference funded by an American university to explicitly focus on the risks and benefits of psychedelic experience. Ph.D’s, M.D.’s, M.A’s, graduate students and lay folk from all walks of life convened at the University of Pennsylvania over the 27th-30th of September 2012 to present new research addressing the historical and potential influences of psychedelics on knowledge production, health, and creativity. The four day event brought together scientists, artists, journalists, historians and philosophers from more than 10 countries for an Ivy League convocation unprecedented not only in view of its controversial subject matter, but in its unparalleled inter-disciplinary scope.
Psychedemia, the film, concisely presents the varied complexity of the emerging field of Psychedelic Studies in a way that is accessible, informative and inspiring. This date of release has been chosen to coincide with another Psychedelics Conference happening this weekend, (April 18th-23rd) in Oakland, California. The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) is hosting scientists and researchers from around the world to focus on empirical neuro-scientific research.
Neşe Devenot, M.A., co-founder of Psychedemia, will be presenting her work as a UPenn graduate student at the MAPS conference on April 19th.
This same weekend, the other co-founder of Psychedemia, Matt Young, will be presenting his work on Psychedelic Medicine as a UPenn Neuroscience Ph.D. candidate at the Philadelphia Science Festival.
Appropriately, these three psychedelic happenings are taking place exactly seven decades after Albert Hoffman, the inventor of LSD, first dosed himself and had an unforgettable bicycle ride home. Since then, April 19th, 1943 has been known as Bicycle Day.
Psychedemia advisor, Jonathan D. Moreno, Ph.D is a Professor of Medical Ethics and Health Policy at UPenn who served as a member of President Barack Obama’s 2008-09 transition team. He wrote about this conference in Psychology Today… “Organized by a group of imaginative Penn graduate students, … the timing of Psychedemia couldn’t be more perspicuous. It’s high time to destigmatize psychedelics as objects of legitimate research for the good they can do.”
Directed and Edited by two-time Emmy Award winner Vann K. Weller and Drew Knight, the documentary is being dedicated to the Public Domain to be freely used for any purpose as an intellectual and cultural artifact – broadcast directly through YouTube.