78 Facts About Richard Dawkins


Richard Dawkins was born on 26 March 1941 and is a British evolutionary biologist and author.


Richard Dawkins is an emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford, and was Professor for Public Understanding of Science in the University of Oxford from 1995 to 2008.


Richard Dawkins is well known for his criticism of creationism and intelligent design as well as for being a vocal atheist.


Richard Dawkins wrote The Blind Watchmaker in 1986, arguing against the watchmaker analogy, an argument for the existence of a supernatural creator based upon the complexity of living organisms.


In 2006, Richard Dawkins published The God Delusion, contending that a supernatural creator almost certainly does not exist and that religious faith is a delusion.


Richard Dawkins founded the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science in 2006.


Richard Dawkins has published two volumes of memoirs, An Appetite for Wonder and Brief Candle in the Dark.

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Richard Dawkins later dropped Clinton from his name by deed poll.


Richard Dawkins is the son of Jean Mary Vyvyan and Clinton John Dawkins, an agricultural civil servant in the British Colonial Service in Nyasaland, of an Oxfordshire landed gentry family.


Richard Dawkins's father was called up into the King's African Rifles during the Second World War and returned to England in 1949, when Dawkins was eight.


Richard Dawkins's father had inherited a country estate, Over Norton Park in Oxfordshire, which he farmed commercially.


Richard Dawkins's parents were interested in natural sciences, and they answered Dawkins's questions in scientific terms.


Richard Dawkins embraced Christianity until halfway through his teenage years, at which point he concluded that the theory of evolution alone was a better explanation for life's complexity, and ceased believing in a god.


On his return to England from Nyasaland in 1949, at the age of eight, Richard Dawkins joined Chafyn Grove School, in Wiltshire, and after that from 1954 to 1959 attended Oundle School in Northamptonshire, an English public school with a Church of England ethos, where he was in Laundimer House.


Richard Dawkins studied zoology at Balliol College, Oxford, graduating in 1962; while there, he was tutored by Nobel Prize-winning ethologist Nikolaas Tinbergen.


Richard Dawkins continued as a research student under Tinbergen's supervision, receiving his Doctor of Philosophy degree by 1966, and remained a research assistant for another year.


Richard Dawkins was awarded a DSc by Oxford in 1989.


From 1967 to 1969, Richard Dawkins was an assistant professor of zoology at the University of California, Berkeley.


Richard Dawkins returned to the University of Oxford in 1970 as a lecturer.


Richard Dawkins has delivered many lectures, including the Henry Sidgwick Memorial Lecture, the first Erasmus Darwin Memorial Lecture, the Michael Faraday Lecture, the T H Huxley Memorial Lecture, the Irvine Memorial Lecture, the Tinbergen Lecture, and the Tanner Lectures.


Richard Dawkins has edited several journals, and has acted as an editorial advisor to the Encarta Encyclopedia and the Encyclopedia of Evolution.


Richard Dawkins is listed as a senior editor and a columnist of the Council for Secular Humanism's Free Inquiry magazine, and has been a member of the editorial board of Skeptic magazine since its foundation.


Richard Dawkins has sat on judging panels for awards as diverse as the Royal Society's Faraday Award and the British Academy Television Awards, and has been president of the Biological Sciences section of the British Association for the Advancement of Science.


In 2004, Balliol College, Oxford, instituted the Richard Dawkins Prize, awarded for "outstanding research into the ecology and behaviour of animals whose welfare and survival may be endangered by human activities".


Richard Dawkins is best known for his popularisation of the gene as the principal unit of selection in evolution; this view is most clearly set out in two of his books:.

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Richard Dawkins has consistently been sceptical about non-adaptive processes in evolution and about selection at levels "above" that of the gene.


Richard Dawkins is particularly sceptical about the practical possibility or importance of group selection as a basis for understanding altruism.


Richard Dawkins popularised these ideas in The Selfish Gene, and developed them in his own work.


In June 2012, Dawkins was highly critical of fellow biologist E O Wilson's 2012 book The Social Conquest of Earth as misunderstanding Hamilton's theory of kin selection.


Richard Dawkins has been strongly critical of the Gaia hypothesis of the independent scientist James Lovelock.


Richard Dawkins's meme refers to any cultural entity that an observer might consider a replicator of a certain idea or set of ideas.


Richard Dawkins hypothesised that people could view many cultural entities as capable of such replication, generally through communication and contact with humans, who have evolved as efficient copiers of information and behaviour.


In January 2016, it was announced that the foundation was merging with the Center for Inquiry, with Richard Dawkins becoming a member of the new organization's board of directors.


Richard Dawkins was confirmed into the Church of England at the age of 13, but began to grow sceptical of the beliefs.


Richard Dawkins said that his understanding of science and evolutionary processes led him to question how adults in positions of leadership in a civilised world could still be so uneducated in biology, and is puzzled by how belief in God could remain among individuals who are sophisticated in science.


Richard Dawkins disagrees with Stephen Jay Gould's principle of nonoverlapping magisteria and suggests that the existence of God should be treated as a scientific hypothesis like any other.


Richard Dawkins became a prominent critic of religion and has stated his opposition to religion as twofold: religion is both a source of conflict and a justification for belief without evidence.


Richard Dawkins has risen to prominence in public debates concerning science and religion since the publication of his most popular book, The God Delusion, in 2006, which became an international bestseller.


Richard Dawkins sees education and consciousness-raising as the primary tools in opposing what he considers to be religious dogma and indoctrination.


Richard Dawkins has given support to the idea of a free-thinking school, which would not "indoctrinate children" but would instead teach children to ask for evidence and be skeptical, critical, and open-minded.


Richard Dawkins has faced backlash over some of his public comments about Islam.


Richard Dawkins is a prominent critic of creationism, a religious belief that humanity, life, and the universe were created by a deity without recourse to evolution.


Richard Dawkins has described the young Earth creationist view that the Earth is only a few thousand years old as "a preposterous, mind-shrinking falsehood".


In general Richard Dawkins has followed the advice of his late colleague Stephen Jay Gould and refused to participate in formal debates with creationists because "what they seek is the oxygen of respectability", and doing so would "give them this oxygen by the mere act of engaging with them at all".


Richard Dawkins has opposed the inclusion of intelligent design in science education, describing it as "not a scientific argument at all, but a religious one".

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Richard Dawkins has been referred to in the media as "Darwin's Rottweiler", a reference to English biologist T H Huxley, who was known as "Darwin's Bulldog" for his advocacy of Charles Darwin's evolutionary ideas.


Richard Dawkins has been a strong critic of the British organisation Truth in Science, which promotes the teaching of creationism in state schools, and whose work Dawkins has described as an "educational scandal".


Richard Dawkins is an outspoken atheist and a supporter of various atheist, secular, and humanist organisations, including Humanists UK and the Brights movement.


Richard Dawkins suggests that atheists should be proud, not apologetic, stressing that atheism is evidence of a healthy, independent mind.


Richard Dawkins supported a UK atheist advertising initiative, the Atheist Bus Campaign in 2008 and 2009, which aimed to raise funds to place atheist advertisements on buses in the London area.


Richard Dawkins has expressed concern about the growth of the human population and about the matter of overpopulation.


Richard Dawkins is critical of Roman Catholic attitudes to family planning and population control, stating that leaders who forbid contraception and "express a preference for 'natural' methods of population limitation" will get just such a method in the form of starvation.


Richard Dawkins regularly comments in newspapers and blogs on contemporary political questions and is a frequent contributor to the online science and culture digest 3 Quarks Daily.


Richard Dawkins's opinions include opposition to the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the British nuclear deterrent, the actions of then-US President George W Bush, and the ethics of designer babies.


Richard Dawkins is a supporter of Republic's campaign to replace the British monarchy with a democratically elected president.


Richard Dawkins has described himself as a Labour voter in the 1970s and voter for the Liberal Democrats since the party's creation.


Richard Dawkins has voiced his support for the Campaign for the Establishment of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly, an organisation that campaigns for democratic reform in the United Nations, and the creation of a more accountable international political system.


In 1998, in a book review published in Nature, Dawkins expressed his appreciation for two books connected with the Sokal affair, Higher Superstition: The Academic Left and Its Quarrels with Science by Paul R Gross and Norman Levitt and Intellectual Impostures by Sokal and Jean Bricmont.


Richard Dawkins suggests that deep space, the billions of years of life's evolution, and the microscopic workings of biology and heredity contain more beauty and wonder than do "myths" and "pseudoscience".


For John Diamond's posthumously published Snake Oil, a book devoted to debunking alternative medicine, Richard Dawkins wrote a foreword in which he asserts that alternative medicine is harmful, if only because it distracts patients from more successful conventional treatments and gives people false hopes.


Richard Dawkins holds honorary doctorates in science from the University of Huddersfield, University of Westminster, Durham University, the University of Hull, the University of Antwerp, the University of Oslo, the University of Aberdeen, Open University, the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, and the University of Valencia.


Richard Dawkins holds honorary doctorates of letters from the University of St Andrews and the Australian National University, and was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1997 and a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2001.


Richard Dawkins is one of the patrons of the Oxford University Scientific Society.


In 1987, Richard Dawkins received a Royal Society of Literature award and a Los Angeles Times Literary Prize for his book The Blind Watchmaker.


Richard Dawkins was awarded the Deschner Award, named after German anti-clerical author Karlheinz Deschner.

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Richard Dawkins topped Prospect magazine's 2004 list of the top 100 public British intellectuals, as decided by the readers, receiving twice as many votes as the runner-up.


Richard Dawkins was shortlisted as a candidate in their 2008 follow-up poll.


Richard Dawkins won the Lewis Thomas Prize for Writing about Science for 2006, as well as the Galaxy British Book Awards's Author of the Year Award for 2007.


In February 2010, Richard Dawkins was named to the Freedom From Religion Foundation's Honorary Board of distinguished achievers.


Richard Dawkins has been married three times and has a daughter.


On 19 August 1967, Richard Dawkins married ethologist Marian Stamp in the Protestant church in Annestown, County Waterford, Ireland; they divorced in 1984.


Richard Dawkins met her through their mutual friend Douglas Adams, who had worked with her on the BBC's Doctor Who.


Richard Dawkins identifies as an atheist who is a "cultural Anglican," associated with the Church of England, and a "secular Christian".


On 6 February 2016, Richard Dawkins suffered a minor haemorrhagic stroke while at home.


Richard Dawkins reported later that same year that he had almost completely recovered.


Richard Dawkins has made many television appearances on news shows providing his political opinions and especially his views as an atheist.


Richard Dawkins has been interviewed on the radio, often as part of his book tours.


Richard Dawkins has made many university speaking appearances, again often in coordination with his book tours.