Virtual Event: Paul Halpern


The Allure of the Multiverse:
Extra Dimensions, Other Worlds,
and Parallel Universes

in conversation with JACOB BARANDES


March 28, 2024
6:00 PM ET


Join our online event (or pre-register) via the link in the event description.


This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store, the Harvard University Division of Science, and the Harvard Library welcome PAUL HALPERN—Professor of Physics at Saint Joseph's University—for a discussion of his new book The Allure of the Multiverse: Extra Dimensions, Other Worlds, and Parallel Universes. He will be joined in conversation by JACOB BARANDES—Co-Director of Graduate Studies for Physics at Harvard University.


Click here to RSVP this free virtual event on Zoom. 

About The Allure of the Multiverse

Our books, our movies—our imaginations—are obsessed with extra dimensions, alternate timelines, and the sense that all we see might not be all there is. In short, we can’t stop thinking about the multiverse. As it turns out, physicists are similarly captivated.  

In The Allure of the Multiverse, physicist Paul Halpern tells the epic story of how science became besotted with the multiverse, and the controversies that ensued. The questions that brought scientists to this point are big and deep: Is reality such that anything can happen, must happen? How does quantum mechanics “choose” the outcomes of its apparently random processes? And why is the universe habitable? Each question quickly leads to the multiverse. Drawing on centuries of disputation and deep vision, from luminaries like Nietzsche, Einstein, and the creators of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Halpern reveals the multiplicity of multiverses that scientists have imagined to make sense of our reality. Whether we live in one of many different possible universes, or simply the only one there is, might never be certain. But Halpern shows one thing for sure: how stimulating it can be to try to find out. 

Praise for The Allure of the Multiverse

“A rich and rewarding history of one of the most astounding ideas in physics and astronomy: the multiverse. Don't believe that other universes might be residing right beside our own, hidden from view in other dimensions? Paul Halpern will convince you to take a second look.” —Marcia Bartusiak, author of Black Hole

“As soon as you contemplate, ‘What if?’ you enter the multiverse. Paul Halpern’s The Allure of the Multiverse serves as a masterful guide. Whether you're a curious novice or a seasoned science enthusiast, this book offers a cogent exploration of the maddening infinities our minds can create.” —Chris Ferrie, author of Where Did The Universe Come From? And Other Cosmic Questions

“The multiverse is a staple in today’s science fiction, but as Paul Halpern shows us, the idea of a multitude of universes has a rich history, with scientists and philosophers debating its merits for centuries. From Friedrich Nietzsche’s musings on ‘eternal return’ to Hugh Everett’s mind-bending interpretation of quantum mechanics, The Allure of the Multiverse blends history and physics while it both provokes and entertains.” —Dan Falk, author of The Science of Shakespeare

Jacob Barandes
Jacob Barandes

Jacob Barandes

Jacob Barandes is a theoretical physicist and philosopher of science at Harvard University. He did his undergraduate work at Columbia University in physics and mathematics, and then completed his PhD in theoretical physics at Harvard. Dr. Barandes currently serves as Lecturer and Co-Director of Graduate Studies for the physics PhD program at Harvard. He is also an Associated Faculty member with Harvard's Department of Philosophy, as well as a Faculty Affiliate with the Harvard Black Hole Initiative. Dr. Barandes teaches courses on the fundamentals of theoretical physics, classical electromagnetism, general relativity, and the history and philosophy of quantum mechanics. His research publications focus on the foundations of quantum theory, philosophy of science, and quantum field theory. Dr. Barandes also organizes the annual New England Workshop on the History and Philosophy of Physics, in addition to an international seminar series on physics and philosophy of science.

Photo Credit: Jared Leeds

Paul Halpern
Paul Halpern

Paul Halpern

Paul Halpern is a professor of physics at Saint Joseph’s University and the author of eighteen popular science books, including Flashes of Creation, The Quantum Labyrinth, Einstein's Dice and Schrodinger's Cat, and Synchronicity. He is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society. He lives near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  


Join our online event (or pre-register) via the link in the event description.
Event Series: Harvard Science Book Talks

The Harvard Science Book Talks series is a collaboration between the Harvard University Division of Science, the Harvard Library, and Harvard Book Store. The series features talks by the authors of recently published books on a variety of science-related topics and is open to both the Harvard community and to the general public. Typically, lectures are followed by a book signing with the author and refreshments. Learn more and watch recordings of past talks here

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