Richard Dawkins is a well known English ethologist, evolutionary biologist, and author of several books. One of his books, “The Selfish Gene”, was a great success.
Dawkins, who introduced the term meme, is one of the promoters of the Scientific Society of Oxford University, where he was Professor of Public Understanding of Science (1995-2008). He is also the founder of the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science (RDFRS). Among his personal convictions is that the existence of God as a scientific hypothesis should be treated like any other.
Clinton Richard Dawkins was born on March 26, 1941, in Nairobi, Kenya, into a Christian family and is the son of Jean Mary Vyvyan and Clinton John Dawkins. His father was an agricultural official in the British Colonial Service in Nyasaland (now Malawi) before returning to England in 1949 when Dawkins was eight years old.
Raised with his younger sister in Oxford, England, Dawkin retreated from his belief in God during his teenage years and concluded that the theory of evolution was a better explanation for the complexity of life. He believes that Darwinism was a far better explanation for the argument of construction.
Richard Dawkin attended an English public school, the Oundle School in Northamptonshire, and graduated from Balliol College, Oxford, where he studied zoology in 1962. He became a research student under the supervision of Nobel Prize-winning ethologist Nikolaas Tinbergen, and after receiving his MA and Ph.D. in philosophy, he remained a research assistant for another year.
Besides getting to know his birthplace and his educational background, the big question remains.
Who is Richard Dawkins?
Richard Dawkins is widely known as a pronounced atheist who is unwaveringly agnostic on issues of religious belief. Dawkins is also known for his criticism of creationism and intelligent design. He is an educator, from research assistant to his alumni to assistant professor of zoology at the University of California at Berkeley (1967-1969).
The original thinker, as described by the NY Times, has given numerous lectures since 1989, including the Micheal Faraday Lecture and the Irvine Memorial Lecture, and has edited several journals. With his diverse reputation and experience in the field of science, Dawkins holds positions such as President of the Life Sciences Section of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, a jury member for awards such as the Faraday Award and the British Academy Television Awards, as well as the Dawkins Prize, established in 2004 by Balliol College, Oxford.
Since the early 1990s, he has received several awards and recognitions for works and books, which are outlined below the honorary doctorate in science from twelve universities; in 1997 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and in 2001 a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS); in 2001 he received the Kistler Prize and the Medal of the Presidency of the Italian Republic; the Emperor Has No Clothes Award in 2001 and 2012; received the Los Angeles Times Prize for Literature and the Royal Society of Literature Prize for his book The Blind Watchmaker; the Finlay Innovation Award (1990); the Nakayama Prize (1994); the Humanist of the Year Award of the American Humanist Association (1996) and the fifth International Cosmos Prize (1997).
Dawkin was voted the world’s leading thinker in a survey conducted by Prospect in 2013, from 65 names selected by a panel of experts based primarily in the United States and the United Kingdom. He has also received other awards such as the Shakespeare Prize, the Lewis Thomas Prize (2006) for writing about science, and the Galaxy British Book Awards’ “Author of the Year” award (2007).
The author of God Delusion was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Times Magazine in 2007 and ranked 20th in the Daily Telegraph’s 2007 list of the 100 greatest living geniuses.
In 2012, ichthyologists in Sri Lanka described Dawkins’ work as one that has helped them to understand the beauty of the universe in its awe-inspiring form as no religion has imagined it. They honored him with a new genus Dawkinsia as a reminder of the simplicity of evolution.
Richard Dawkins is the author of several scientific books, including “Viruses of the Mind” (1991), “The View from Mount Improbable” (2005), “The Evolution of Life” (1996), “The Extended Phenotype” (1982), “Unweaving the Rainbow” (1998), “The Greatest Show on Earth” (2009), “The Blind Watchmaker” (1986), “The Magic of Reality” (2011), “The Ancestral Tale” (2004), “Appetite for Wonders” (2013), “Short Candle in the Dark” (2015), “Science in the Soul” (2017) and many others.
Dawkins is a supporter of various atheistic, humanistic and secular organizations as well as a supporter of the Great Ape Project. He criticizes the Roman Catholic rejection of artificial family planning and the use of contraception to control the world population.
Although he was accepted into the Church of England at the age of 13, he is a prominent critic of religion and creationism, believing that the universe, with its humanity and life, was created by a deity. He puzzles how highly developed scientists can still believe in God and how leaders in a civilized world can still be uneducated in biology. He is also a critic of alternative medicine and pseudoscience.
As far as we know, Dawkins’ net assets are $10 million, which is not surprising. His work over the years as a researcher, university professor, speaker, media personality, and author is a testament to his success and wealth in his lifetime.
His Wife and Family Facts
Richard Dawkins was married three times and is the father of a daughter, Juliet Emma Dawkins, whom he had with his second wife, the late Eve Barham (August 19, 1951 – February 28, 1999) – they were divorced before her death.
He first married his ethologist colleague Marian Stamp (1967-1984). He and the actress Lalla Ward married in 1992 after being introduced to each other by their mutual friend. The couple separated in 2016 by an amicable agreement.