The Riggs Blog

Steve Silberman: A Recipient of the Austen Riggs Center 2016 Erikson Institute Prize for Excellence in Mental Health Media

Recently, the Erikson Institute of the Austen Riggs Center announced the recipients of the 2016 Erikson Institute Prize for Excellence in Mental Health Media: 

  • Benedict Carey, a reporter covering brain and behavior topics at The New York Times
  • Neal Shusterman, a New York Times bestselling novelist, screenwriter, and television writer
  • Steve Silberman, an award-winning science writer, whose work has appeared in Wired, The New Yorker, Salon, and Nature

The recipients will be honored at a Media Colloquy, free and open to the public, at the Austen Riggs Center on Saturday, August 20, beginning at 1:00 in the afternoon. 

Steve Silberman is a 2016 Erikson Institute Prize for Excellence in Mental Health Media winner. Today, we’re taking a closer look at prize recipient Steve Silberman. 

Silberman received his bachelor’s degree in psychology from Oberlin College and his master’s in English Literature from the University of California, Berkeley. He studied with Alan Ginsberg at Naropa University in the late 1970s, eventually returning to the university as Ginsberg’s teaching assistant in the late 1980s.  

Silberman has spent more than a decade as an editor and contributor for Wired magazine, where his piece “The Placebo Problem” won the 2010 “Kavli Science Journalism Award for Magazine Writing” from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. “The Forgotten History of Autism,” a TED Talk Silberman gave in 2015, has been viewed more than a million times and translated into 25 languages.

In addition to his work as a science writer, Silberman co-produced the Grateful Dead’s box set, So Many Roads (1965-1995), which earned a gold record from the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and has authored numerous liner notes for artists such as Crosby, Stills & Nash and the Jerry Garcia Band. 

Silberman, along with the other prize recipients, will give a presentation about his work and its relationship to mental health issues at the Media Colloquy. Continuing education credits will be offered to MDs, PhDs, PsyDs, and social workers. This event is free and open to the public. Seating is limited; advance registration is recommended. To register, please call [413] 931.5230 or email: samantha.blache@austenriggs.net.

The Austen Riggs Center’s Erikson Institute Prize for Excellence in Mental Health Media recognizes and encourages writers, journalists, and media experts who have produced sophisticated and accessible work on mental health issues. Nell Casey, the author and editor of books on mental health including Unholy Ghost: Writers on Depression, co-curated this year’s prize and will be on hand for the ceremonies.

More information on Steve Silberman:

Past Media Colloquy Presentations: 

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