Richard E. Cytowic, MD, MFA is best known for bringing synesthesia back to mainstream science after decades of obscurity. Synesthesia is the involuntary coupling of senses wherein a sound, for example, is seen or tasted as well as heard. First rediscovered 35 years ago, the phenomenon is now appreciated as fundamental to our notions of how the human brain is organized.
The neurologist holds an MFA in creative writing from American University. He received a Pulitzer nomination for his New York Times magazine cover story about James Brady, the Press Secretary shot in the head during the assassination attempt on President Reagan. Among Dr. Cytowic’s six books, Wednesday Is Indigo Blue: Discovering the Brain of Synesthesia won the 2011 Montaigne Medal.
Dr. Cytowic is a fellow of the Southampton Writers Conference, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Hambidge Center. Speaking venues include the Library of Congress, the Hirshhorn Museum, NASA colloquia, and the Smithsonian Institution. Media appearances include “Good Morning America,” “60 Minutes,” “National Geographic,” NPR, and BBC documentaries about synesthesia.