I am gay and I am a neuroscientist, teaching at Columbia University, woking on vision and visual perception.//
I have thought of myself as a scientist since I was very young, growing up in India. But only after a stint imagining myself as an archaeologist after reading the book Gods Graves and Scholars as a young boy.
I have also identified as gay, for about as long as I have as a scientist. I think that being gay also made me more conscious of the need to be socially aware to use my work in ways that are socially relevant. Being a scientist, what that meant was joining the group Science For The People while a post doc in Boston. Here in New York the social activism was less related to science; I was part of a listener-sponsored community radio program that broadcast on social and cultural issues related to Asia and I have always been happiest when I can combine good science with focused social or political involvement.