Siddhartha Mukherjee

The Song of the Cell
Dec 14, 2022, 5:00 pm6:15 pm
Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall
Free and open to the public



Event Description

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Pioneering oncologist, researcher, and award-winning science writer Siddhartha Mukherjee is one of the world’s premiere cancer researchers. He is the author of The New York Times bestselling and Pulitzer Prize winning book The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer, a groundbreaking work that charts the history of cancer with a cellular biologist’s precision, a historian’s perspective, and a biographer’s passion. It was named one of the 100 most influential books of the last 100 years by Time magazine and was adapted into a PBS documentary by filmmaker Ken Burns.

His forthcoming book and the topic for this event, The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human, tells the story of how scientists discovered cells, began to understand them, and are now using that knowledge to create new humans. With writing that is vivid, lucid, and suspenseful, Mukherjee’s third book is an extraordinary exploration of what it means to be human. 

In both his writing and his keynote talks, Mukherjee weaves science, social history, and personal narrative to illustrate the many medical breakthroughs that have shaped our society and offers a glimpse of what the future might hold for us as well.

Mukherjee is an assistant professor of medicine at Columbia University and a staff physician at New York-Presbyterian Hospital. A Rhodes Scholar, Mukherjee graduated from Stanford University, University of Oxford, and Harvard Medical School. He has published articles in The New Yorker, The New England Journal of Medicine, The New York Times, Nature, and others. He lives in New York with his wife and daughters.

Shirley M. Tilghman was elected Princeton University’s 19th president on May 5, 2001 after serving on the Princeton faculty for 15 years.  Upon the completion of her term in June of 2013, she returned to the faculty. During her scientific career as a mammalian developmental geneticist, she studied the way in which genes are organized in the genome and regulated during early development, and was one of the founding members of the National Advisory Council of the Human Genome Project for the National Institutes of Health. 

Dr. Tilghman is an Officer of the Order of Canada, the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society for Developmental Biology, the Genetics Society of America Medal, the L’Oréal-UNESCO Award for Women in Science, and the George W. Beadle Award from the Genetics Society of America. She is a member of the American Philosophical Society, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine and The Royal Society of London.  She serves as a trustee of Amherst College, the Institute for Advanced Study, and the Simons Foundation. She serves on the Science Advisory Board of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, is a director of The Broad Institute of MIT, and a Fellow of the Corporation of Harvard College.

Please Note: Copies of Siddhartha's new book, The Song of the Cell: An Exploration of Medicine and the New Human will be handed out to the first 400 attendees.



  • Labyrinth Books
  • Department of Molecular Biology