click for official oliver sacks website
Photo credit: Elena Seibert

This site provides an introduction to Oliver Sacks’s work and life, offers summaries of some of Dr. Sacks’s clinical tales, and makes it easy for Columbians to access Dr. Sacks’s essays, books, videos, audio, news, and criticism.

Appointments: Scientist & Artist

Columbia Artist

President Lee C. Bollinger created the position of Columbia Artist in 2007 to make Oliver Sacks available to all of Columbia University. Dr. Sacks’s position is unconstrained by any particular department, school, program, or campus group. The Arts Initiative, under the President’s Office, is honored to help all members of the Columbia community reach out to Dr. Sacks. [More on this position . . . ]

Professor of Neurology, Psychiatry and the Arts

Oliver Sacks, M.D. is professor of Neurology and Psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Center, and Professor of the Arts in the Writing Program of the School of the Arts. His main clinical interests are movement and sensory disorders, disorders of consciousness, memory and awareness, and neurological adaptation. [ More on this position . . .]

Contact email

To learn more about how your department or campus group can work with Dr. Sacks, contact Eleanor Milburn at the Arts Initiative - 212.851.1872 or


January 30, 2011
“The Music Never Stopped,” the independent feature film based on Dr. Sacks’s essay “The Last Hippie,” made its debut at the Sundance Film Festival this month, and will hit theaters this March. It is a moving story about the healing power of music, with a soundtrack featuring the Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, and Crosby, Stills and Nash. Meanwhile, “Molly Sweeney,” the Brian Friel play inspired by “To See and Not See” (another of the essays in An Anthropologist on Mars) opened at the Irish Repertory Theatre in New York City, with performances through March 13. And Dr. Sacks will be speaking at two conferences this spring: WNET’s Celebration of Teaching and Learning (New York, March 18-19) and, for the metallurgically inclined, the International Minor Metals Conference (Philadelphia, May 4-6).


This is primarily a Columbia University and NYC-focused list. Please visit for a complete guide to upcoming events.


February 10, 2011 at 8:00 pm
New York: 92nd Street Y


January 11, 2011 at 6:00 pm
New York: Museum of Modern Art

November 10, 2010 at 7:30 pm
Philadelphia: Philadelphia Free Library

November 5, 2010 at 7:00 pm
Washington, DC: Politics and Prose at Wesley United Methodist Church

October 30, 2010 at 3:00 pm
New York: Rubin Museum of Art

October 28, 2010 at 7:00 pm
Boston: Harvard Bookstore at the First Parish Church

October 27, 2010 at 7:00 pm
New York: Barnes and Noble Union Square

June 4, 2010
Strangers in the Mirror
Featuring: Oliver Sacks + Chuck Close
Buy Tickets

Jun 3, 2009
Narrative Medicine Rounds - "Hallucinations"
Hammer Health Sciences Center/Long Library Room 401
701 W. 168th Street
(Corner of 168th & Fort Washington Ave.)
open to the public, 5:00pm

June 1, 2009
Keynote, Annual Joint Meeting of the Royal Society of Medicine and the New York Academy of Medicine
New York Academy of Medicine, 1216 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY
open to the public, 5.30pm


The Arts Initiative at Columbia University, 2009
Contact the Arts Initiative at 212.851.1872 or