This Saturday, at the extraordinary New York Academy of Medicine Library, I’ll be speaking from 12:30-1 PM on “Gray Matter: The Obscure Pleasures of Medical Libraries,” at a conference brilliantly curated by Joanna Ebenstein of Morbid Anatomy and featuring, among others, Oliver Sacks, Lawrence Weschler, Michael Sappol, Amy Herzog, and Salvador Olguin.
WHAT: Festival of Medical History & The Arts.
WHERE: New York Academy of Medicine, 1216 Fifth Avenue at 103rd Street.
“Medical libraries such as the New York Academy of Medicine’s offer ready access to a mother lode of ‘invisible literature,’ the SF novelist J. G. Ballard’s term for medical textbooks, scientific journals, technical manuals, and other gray matter. Although it comprises a veritable galaxy in the universe of print media, invisible literature is nowhere to be found in general-interest bookstores and is never reviewed in mainstream book pages for the simple fact that no one, not even the specialists who are its intended audience, thinks of this stuff as literature in the literary sense of the word. But what if we did?”