Richard Dawkins named world’s top thinker in poll

107

Evolutionary biologist beats four Nobel prize winners for his global influence and significance on the year's biggest questions. When Prospect magazine listed Britain's leading public intellectuals in 2004 and invited readers' votes, it was Richard Dawkins who emerged as No 1. Nine years on, the biologist, author and campaigner has bettered that by topping its "world thinkers" rankings, beating four Nobel prize winners (and another contender regarded as certain to receive one soon) in a poll based on 65 names chosen by a largely US- and UK-based expert panel.


Joining him in the top 10 are the psychologists Steven Pinker (3) and Daniel Kahneman (10), the economists Paul Krugman (5) and Amartya Sen (7) and the philosopher Slavoj Žižek (6), who all, like him, figured in the magazine's first list of world-class thinkers in 2005.

A late run by the octogenarian British physicist Peter Higgs (8) secured him a place in an elite squad containing three other scientists, while the remaining slots are taken by academics turned politicians from the Middle East: Afghanistan's Ashraf Ghani (2), an economist who served as finance minister after the US-led invasion; Iraq's Ali Allawi (4), another ex-minister and author of The Occupation of Iraq and The Crisis of Islamic Civilization; and Egypt's Mohamed ElBaradei (9), prominent in the Arab Spring and now in opposition to Mohamed Morsi.

To qualify for this year's world thinkers rankings, it was not enough to have written a seminal book, inspired an intellectual movement or won a Nobel prize several years ago (hence the absence from the 65-strong long list of ageing titans such as Noam Chomsky or Edward O Wilson); the selectors' remit ruthlessly insisted on "influence over the past 12 months" and "significance to the year's biggest questions".

This requirement may have been a factor in the top 10 being all-male (presumably a source of frustration to the five women on the selection panel, including Prospect's editor Bronwen Maddox), with longlistees such as Hilary Mantel, Martha Nussbaum and Sheryl Sandberg not making it through to the elite of the elite, and the likes of Germaine Greer and Naomi Klein not even making it into the 65. But it may also, of course, simply reflect the gender make-up of the monthly's readership.

 

Written By: John Dugdale
continue to source article at m.guardian.co.uk

107 COMMENTS

  1. Yay!

    I see neither of the popes got a mention, or any other religious leader. No surprise there then.

  2. What’s that loud grinding noise I hear from the direction of The Guardian’s offices?

    Oh… it’s Andrew Brown’s teeth.

    Congratulations, Richard!

  3. Congratulations, Professor Dawkins! Your Number One position on the list of most influential thinkers is not only a great personal achievement but also an obvious indicator as to what is in the forefront of people’s minds, namely a move from ancient dogmas to rationalist views. Thank you for being a great contributor to that move.

  4. Congratulations, Richard.

    It must get you down sometimes, to be misquoted, misunderstood and accused of all sorts of mischief, including holding views you don’t hold, etc, etc. Let this award encourage you, and remind you that you are very much appreciated by many, many people.

  5. In reply to #1 by Eamonn Shute:

    Yay!

    I see neither of the popes got a mention, or any other religious leader. No surprise there then.

    Unsurprisingly as it was a poll on top thinkers not arch lunatics

  6. How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the political lap-dogs, entertainment buffoons, and religious twats who receive honours from knighthoods to life peerages I shake my head. I suppose the establishment in the UK doesn’t care for him very much.

  7. Congratulations, Professor! Well deserved. Your tireless effort to promote science and reason is much appreciated.

  8. On a much smaller scale, you are one of the top influences on my classroom. I actually think that this is more important!!! Thanks so much for all the inspiration over these years. And, Congratulations.

  9. It is Richard’s site, but hooray for Steven Pinker! His book is a much needed breath of fresh air in a time when pessimism of our species dominates the headlines.

  10. Maybe he will be knighted one day but a reason for it not happening might be that such knighthoods are bestowed by the leader of the Church of England. I expect atheists have been knighted in the past, but I doubt if someone as high profile for his atheism like Richard has been. Still excluded from this “honour” for many years were Gays, John Guilgud had to wait decades longer than any of the “Straight” theatrical knights of his generation.
    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

  11. WOW! Am both amazed and delighted for RD. This makes my day, my week, my life!

    “When I look at some of the political lap-dogs, entertainment buffoons, and religious twats who receive honours from knighthoods to life peerages I shake my head”

    You know the reason, then! I would hope he’d reject any honour as unworthy of his humanitarian status.
    [Loved it when Lennon told the Establishment where to poke its MBE!]

    But then, its his choice…IF it were to happen

  12. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

    Garter or nothing if just for the strutting rights under all that artificially selected plumage.

    Mike

    (PS. Very happy for the Prof.)

  13. Well of course my congratulations to Richard ! And full marks for the interview with Hassan, the perceptive journalist who believes in a flying horse carrying Mohammed to heaven. Always polite, always well mannered, Richard is never afraid to call out nonsense wherever it’s encountered.

    Quite refreshing indeed ! As for honours, maybe Richard has been offered one and refused it. After all, look at the competition, Sir Mick Jagger, Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Ralph Halpern, Sir Elton John…… I mean how can a mere biologist compete with such luminaries ? What’s biology got to do with anything anyway? Them dam Oxford academics sure don’t pay my gas bill !

  14. If scientists and academics came up with a list of the top ten thinkers, I doubt the public would even recognise anyone’s name but Richard Dawkins and Stephen Hawking. This award is more a measure of fame. However, that is a very good thing too for what Dr. Dawkins is trying to accomplish.

  15. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted?

    David Attenborough was. So why not? Hint. Queen Elizabeth holds the title Defender of the Faith and head of the Church of England. Richard is head of the loyal opposition.

  16. the selectors’ remit ruthlessly insisted on “influence over the past 12 months” and “significance to the year’s biggest questions”.

    So what exactly was his influence over the last 12 months? On whom? What were the years biggest questions? What were his answers to the worlds biggest questions?

  17. No4 on the list- Ali Allawi-

    OH, no… no,no. Whatever his achievements in finance and M.E. politics, his infatuation with Islam should disbar him.
    This interview- https://www.carnegiecouncil.org/studio/multimedia/20090513/index.html/:pf_printable

    has him dancing around the central issue of Islam; that it is far more a violent political dogma than a true religion. Nowhere does he confront the koranic verses of violence, of hatred of the ‘kuffar’, of the Jews and all other non-muslims.
    Such a disingenuous person merits no place on this list

  18. In reply to #20 by Nodhimmi:

    …it is far more a violent political dogma than a true religion.

    True religion? Sounding an awful lot like certain theists there, dear feller.

  19. Congrats and well earned.

    I do however, in general, find such lists frivolous. Like those Forbes lists of top 100 justabouteverything.

  20. Spreading Reason and Sanity in the world in the face of Dogma and Insanity, no less!*

    In reply to #19 by atheistengineer:*

    the selectors’ remit ruthlessly insisted on “influence over the past 12 months” and “significance to the year’s biggest questions”.

    So what exactly was his influence over the last 12 months? On whom? What were the years biggest questions? What were his answers to the worlds biggest questions?

  21. Yay! Of course we all knew that!
    Not so sure about the all the others public figures chosen.

    Congratulations.

  22. I am not going to congratulate you, I just hope you will continue to place truth above all else, even if the opposite to this achievement happens and all people start to pull you down instead of lifting you up. Truth is paramount, we are people of language and reason without truth we will quickly go astray and if truth is hidden, then some who know the truth may use that information to manipulate others wrongly even if they incorrectly think they are doing the ‘right’ thing. I hope you carry on your work and are named top thinker for many a year, just always hold on to the truth.

  23. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    Isn’t it the same reason as Bob Geldorf, he’s a foreigner?

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

  24. That’s a weird thing to say to RD?

    Isn’t the truth all science cares about anyway? Not sure how he could lie for his cause but isn’t that something you do when you’re a theist or have no evidence and your followers don’t demand any.

    Seems a bit rude reminding RD not to be a liar which he is conspicuously not!

    Oh, and congratulations to Richard!

    In reply to #25 by leemachilles:

    I am not going to congratulate you, I just hope you will continue to place truth above all else, even if the opposite to this achievement happens and all people start to pull you down instead of lifting you up. Truth is paramount, we are people of language and reason without truth we will quickly g…

  25. World’s top thinker ! Who else? Not easy to have an intelligent disagreement with Richard, as many have proved.

  26. “This requirement may have been a factor in the top 10 being all-male (presumably a source of frustration to the five women on the selection panel)”
    Why do you assume that women support women more and the men on the panel wouldn’t be frustrated? Surely the entire panel are only interested in who are in the top ten based on influence, not based on gender.

    That is like saying “None of the top ten thinkers were left handed, presumably a source of frustration for the left handed people on the selection panel”.

  27. In reply to #10 by Eamonn Shute:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? ………………..

    Perhaps this has something to do with it:-

    http://www.edge.org/3rdculture/prince/princeindex.html

    Richard is in good company – Darwin was never knighted.

    I’m getting a Page not found error for your link. Are you referring to An Open Letter to Prince Charles from Richard Dawkins [5.20.00]? The opening lines have a certain “je ne sais quoi” that draws me to it.

    ** Your Royal Highness, **

    ** Your Reith lecture saddened me. I have deep sympathy for your aims, and admiration for your sincerity. But your hostility to science will not serve those aims; and your embracing of an ill-assorted jumble of mutually contradictory alternatives will lose you the respect that I think you deserve. I forget who it was who remarked: “Of course we must be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out.” **

    ** Let’s look at some of the alternative philosophies which you seem to prefer over scientific reason… **

    Charles might not have gotten any farther but all can read the 17 paragraphs of this deftly crafted langue diplomatique at http://www.edge.org/conversation/an-open-letter-to-prince-charles.

  28. Congratulations, Professor Dawkins. A well deserved honor for all your past and present contributions to human enlightenment.

  29. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

    Well,wouldn’t he have to be knighted by the head of the church of England? Correct me if I’m wrong,and he’d probably get some magic powers to go along with it,and a sword to kill people with…sure,isn’t that what kiniggitts do ,,,well did?

  30. Congrats Richard. This helps me laugh at those articles that the religious are writing about how you are loosing influence among real thinkers. Ho, ho, ho.

  31. The philosopher Slavoj Žižek (6) in a lecture in 2007:

    “I believe we live in strange times. On the one hand we have this so-called rise of fundamentalism and so on and so on, but something very interesting started to happen in the last years. Did you notice how a certain very vulgar direct materialism attacking religion as stupidity, immoral laws, is gaining also at the same time extreme popularity? The three big stars, even four, of course are originally Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett and now also Christopher Hitchens and Sam Harris. It’s kind of an extremely vulgar reductionist materialism claiming religion is basically stupid ethically hurtful and so on. I think more and more that these are in a way two sides of the same coin; That we don’t have the truth between these two.”

    Some but not enough consolation can be gained from this charlatan not being higher than 6th place. It’s high time we declared open season on these gangrenous turncoats.

  32. Congratulations Richard. You are truly a beacon in a sea of mediocrity. Your formula is simple, but not too simple by simply seeking first to understand, marshalling the facts and being prepared to change your mind view in the light of factual discovery.

  33. In lieu of congratulations… my way to spell Richard Dawkins’ name:

    R esearcher extrordineur!
    I mpressive!
    C ompetant!
    H umorous!
    A mazing!
    R ealistic!
    D elightful speaker!

    D arwinian,
    A uthor,
    W ise,
    K nowledgeable,
    I nsriring!
    No. 1 thinker!
    S uperb Scientist!

  34. It pleases me to see that Richard Dawkins and Steven Pinker are both being recognised for the superb thinkers they are. Quite frankly it says a lot more for the voters and the expert panel than it does for them, we already knew that these two are brilliant! 😀

  35. There are a handful of names that spring to mind when I think of great thinkers. Steven Pinker, Lawrence krauss, sam Harris, Dan Dennet, and of course Richard Dawkins.

    Congratulations Richard. A worthy recipient. You deserve it.

  36. I’d have put Stephen Hawking quite high up, possibly top, but that’s my bias as a physicist. Well done Dawkins, great result!

  37. The term Top Thinker reminds of a man who was asked what he did on the porch all day. He replied – “sometimes I sit and think, and at other times I just sit”.
    Congratulations Professor.

  38. A well deserved acknowledgment of remarkable achievements.Congratulations to prof Dawkins.

  39. In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:

    It pleases me to see that Richard Dawkins and Steven Pinker are both being recognised for the superb thinkers they are. Quite frankly it says a lot more for the voters and the expert panel

    Which were less than 0.05% of the population, with an average age of 50 and seemingly unable to clarify which piece of original thinking from 2012/13 it was based on and who it influenced?

    Which piece of superb thinking from this year do you think it was? In answer to which big question? And who of importance, did it influence?

    Govt policy? Obviously not as we still have unelected bishops in the house of lords holding back legislation and a massive increase in the number of faith schools plus an increase the power of religious governors to run them. The Arab Spring? Still seems to be being taken over by the Muslim Brotherhood. The RCC in Africa? Those in the RCC responsible for protecting past abusers? Economists? Bankers? Scientists? Hardly RD hasn’t been an evolutionary biologist for years now.

  40. In reply to #46 by atheistengineer:

    In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:

    Which were less than 0.05% of the population, with an average age of 50 and s…

    Have you got a problem with people over 50?

  41. Congratulations, Richard! Living in the Bible Belt, I sometimes think I’m the only person who appreciates what you are doing to combat superstition and promote science, but accolades like this give me hope the message is sinking in across the world.

  42. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

    Of course Richard should be knighted; but would he accept it?
    As far as I know Stephen Hawking refused it.
    The fact that Iqbal Sacranie was awarded it demotes knighthood status.
    Politics suffers persistent pollution!

  43. I’m glad to see that your efforts are being rewarded, Professor. Changing the world one step at a time, the human race can learn so much from your example.

  44. In reply to #57 by hellosnackbar:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very le…

    I think that he would out of politeness if nothing else. He has commented on this possibility before.

  45. In reply to #51 by ConnedCatholic:

    In reply to #46 by atheistengineer:In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:Which were less than 0.05% of the population, with an average age of 50 and s…Have you got a problem with people over 50?

    Nope none at all, A lot of great thinkers and most of the people who could have won that poll or voted in it are in that category. However I would also have imagined that many of RDs more devoted fans would fall into that demographic as I guess they are remembering him from an different era and that would appear to be the demographic of the magazine.

    Uncritical fandom comes from many age groups but uncritical fandom of RD specifically is probably more prevalent in that generation.

    I was simply trying to understand why Richard Dawkins won. Given that Richard Dawkins doesn’t seem to have achieved as much of late as he has in the past (mainly because the world in reality is very different to the one he seems to remember and because uncritical fandom is not good for any thinker) and I can’t actually see what his influence on any of the big questions has been of late he seemed a very odd choice for first place.

  46. Richard Dawkins’ contribution to the freedom of humanity from the tyranny of religion will be long remembered.
    He had the courage to fight against ‘ignorance’ without fear or favor. He persevered. He stood up like a giant and he liberated all those who were willing to listen.
    All the books he authored will be like companions for generations to come and will be listed in the best libraries of the world, whether religious or secular.

  47. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted?

    He may well have been offered a knighthood but refused — and the convention in such cases is that neither the offer nor the refusal are publicized by either party. This may also be the case with Stephen Hawking, who probably would not only be knighted by now but an O.M. if, as I suspect, he did not have a principled objection to honours apart from those awarded by his peers (such as Fellowship of the Royal Society) rather than the general honours of the establishment at large.

  48. In reply to #33 by whiteraven:

    Are you referring to An Open Letter to Prince Charles from Richard Dawkins [5.20.00]? The opening lines have a >certain “je ne sais quoi” that draws me to it.

    Many thanks for that link whiteraven. I don’t think I’d read that before; a really wonderful, sober summary of a noble outlook.

  49. In reply to #26 by alaskansee:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    Isn’t it the same reason as Bob Geldorf, he’s a foreigner?

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes > me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his…

    He’s not. He was born in Kenya, but unlike Richard Leakey he’s not a Kenyan citizen.

  50. In reply to #57 by hellosnackbar:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very le…

    Accepting knighthood would be a sell-out.

  51. In reply to #60 by atheistengineer:

    In reply to #51 by ConnedCatholic:

    In reply to #46 by atheistengineer:In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:Which were less than 0.05% of the population, with an average age of 50 and s…Have you got a problem with people over 50?

    Nope none at all, A lot of great thinkers and most of the people who could have won that poll or voted in it are in that category. However I would also have imagined that many of RDs more devoted fans would fall into that demographic as I guess they are remembering him from an different era and that would appear to be the demographic of the magazine.

    Uncritical fandom comes from many age groups but uncritical fandom of RD specifically is probably more prevalent in that generation.

    I was simply trying to understand why Richard Dawkins won. Given that Richard Dawkins doesn’t seem to have achieved as much of late as he has in the past

    If you were truly “simply trying to understand why Richard Dawkins won” rather than trying to wring yet another contrarian post out of thin, to no, to opposing facts as your history of prior posts would suggest, then you would have read and understood in the very first sentence of the article: “Evolutionary biologist beats four Nobel prize winners for his global influence and significance on the year’s biggest questions.” And again further down in the article: “the selectors’ remit ruthlessly insisted on “influence over the past 12 months” and “significance to the year’s biggest questions”.

    The criteria for selection were influence and significance i.e. not what he had achieved of late versus what he had achieved in the past. If you fail to see his influence on the question whether the people of the world are going to arrange their lives around facts or arrange their lives around falsehoods or you fail to even to see that question as significant that would then lead us to “simply trying to understand” what are you doing on RDFRS?

  52. And scores of idiot god-botherers, some pretending to be “reasonable” or “tolerant” Christians/Muslims/etc. and others posing as “journalists” are foaming at the mouth in conniption fits of moral outrage, casting off large volumes of ineffective, generally childish and often baffling insults in blogs and newspapers and the Daily Mail everywhere in the English-speaking world!

    Oh? … Really? … They’re ALWAYS like that? … I see…. How sad and disgusting! I hope they get better some day!

  53. In reply to #60 by atheistengineer:

    In reply to #51 by ConnedCatholic:

    In reply to #46 by atheistengineer:In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:Which were less than 0.05% of the population, with an average age of 50 and s…Have you got a problem with people over 50?

    Nope none at all, A lot of great thinkers and most of the people who coul…
    However I would also have imagined that many of RDs more devoted fans would fall into that demographic as I guess they are remembering him from an different era

    What era? I thought the era of extreme concern about the effect of religions started Sep 2001. That era is still now; as far as I can discern. Look at #61 below your comment to get an idea of why he is so well respected. He has made it clear that he had no real problem with religion other on academic grounds until 2001 exposed the very real danger of religion to life on this planet.

  54. Actually I think (and this is probably a very dangerous thing to say) that Atheistengineer and others are just plain pissed off that it is not a feminist that won the aclaim. Or themselves!

  55. In reply to #70 by ConnedCatholic:

    Actually I think (and this is probably a very dangerous thing to say) that Atheistengineer and others are just plain pissed off that it is not a feminist that won the aclaim. Or themselves!

    I would advise you not to get on that elevator.

  56. So much to do… So little done…
    Congratulations, Monsieur Dawkins ! This toy-rattle propels you on top of a first height, but, as you wrote in your (keen) letter to “Prince Charming” : « The human brain […] can see across the valley and can plot a course away from extinction and towards distant uplands »…..
    Let’s hope this award will be much publicized —not for swaggering around, with would be a bit “punkish” (^^)—, but to spread the news to a maximum people, that rationalism and anti-obscurantism actually EQUALS “world top-thinking” ! !
    Then, the planetary “noosphere” would get forward one millimeter farther…
    The Renaissance took about one century and a half to bring civilization from an almighty church-driven era to a humanist way of thinking !
    Courage !

  57. In reply to #70 by ConnedCatholic:

    Actually I think (and this is probably a very dangerous thing to say) that Atheistengineer and others are just plain pissed off that it is not a feminist that won the aclaim. Or themselves!

    Hey! Careful! That was unnecessary.
    RD deserves the award because he comes to conclusions by using all the knowledge & tools at his disposal without fear or favour. He could sit back & enjoy a comfortable retirement, but instead chooses to go out & bring the clear messages of scientific findings to the uninitiated.

  58. In reply to #72 by godsbuster:

    In reply to #70 by ConnedCatholic:

    Actually I think (and this is probably a very dangerous thing to say) that Atheistengineer and others are just plain pissed off that it is not a feminist that won the aclaim. Or themselves!

    I would advise you not to get on that elevator.

    OK. I retract.

  59. In reply to #74 by Nitya:

    In reply to #70 by ConnedCatholic:

    Actually I think (and this is probably a very dangerous thing to say) that Atheistengineer and others are just plain pissed off that it is not a feminist that won the aclaim. Or themselves!

    Hey! Careful! That was unnecessary.
    RD deserves the award because he come…

    I agree with you. I certainly appreciate the sacrifice he makes and hope that he gets unending satisfaction with the result.

  60. In reply to #60 by atheistengineer:

    However I would also have imagined that many of RDs more devoted fans would fall into that demographic as I guess they are remembering him from an different era and that would appear to be the demographic of the magazine.

    Just turned 32, but I read.

  61. Congratulations Richard, what impact do you think that finding out 100% positive, that we are not alone in the universe will have on religion Particularly the radical so called religions such as islam,Having an intelligent life form assisting us in ridding the world of this blatant ignorance of religion which is obviously man made in all cases.

  62. I understand why you refer to it as a “sellout” but in Britain most if not all national honours come with the trappings of the religious establishment.

    In reply to #66 by quarecuss:

    In reply to #57 by hellosnackbar:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have r…

  63. In reply to #59 by ConnedCatholic:

    In reply to #57 by hellosnackbar:

    I have not seen anything by Richard Dawkins on this subject. Not saying he hasn’t been asked or offered his views….I just haven’t seen it…..

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have r…

  64. “The plumage don’t enter into it mate!” LOL

    In reply to #15 by Sample:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very le…

  65. I say sir, congrats are in order, well done Dawkins

  66. Dear Prof Dawkins. Well done – outstanding. Not long now till the BBC’s 6pm news reports, “Oxford don and ex-militant atheist, Richard Dawkins, was Knighted by King William today, for services to the ‘Public Understanding of Science’. “Arise, Sir Richard”! And why the hell not. 😉 m

  67. Congratulations professor Richard Dawkins selected as world’s top thinker in poll.Your tireless effort against superstition and blind belief will be a beacon forever for the generation ahead us.Your books packed with knowledge of space,evelution ,time will be a treasure house for the rational and atheist all over the world.
    v.k.appu

  68. Thank you for your tireless communication of science and reason, Dr. Dawkins. You are a gentleman and a scholar.

  69. In reply to #60 by atheistengineer:

    In reply to #51 by ConnedCatholic:

    In reply to #46 by atheistengineer:In reply to #40 by Peter Grant:Which were less than 0.05% of the population, with an average age of 50 and s…Have you got a problem with people over 50?

    Nope none at all, A lot of great thinkers and most of the people who coul…

    atheistengineer, I would love to know who you might have put in the top slot and why. I think that could far better illustrate your point. In terms of generating column inches of newsprint, debate footage, and book publishing poundage (?)re: pro-science, religions role in anti-science and education-hobbling and the like, Richard has clocked up measurable results. Its hard to know how to measure results elsehow.

    Personally, I would have liked to see Maryam Namazie in the 65 at least. Also Wilkinson and Pickett. They clearly are not being public enough about the Equality Trust.

  70. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

    I’ve seen him listed on several sites as a republican, which sort of makes sense.
    If you don’t think a God exists then of course you might question the head of state being an inherited position where the head of state is also the head of the army,the head of the church and believes they have a divine right to rule.
    You might look about to more progressive nations and envy their ability to honour popular choices as leaders of the nation not accept genetic happen chance.

    In any case it is well known that if somebody turns down a Knighthood unless they make that public knowledge the Palace certainluy doesn’t. My guess is however that he is to controversial by far for the main stream media who seem him as some sort of wild extremist.

    it is of course a shame that there exists no equivalent national honour that need not be conferred by the anachronism of a monarch; maybe one day.
    I definitely think he should have a Nobel prize for his lifetime achievement of championing the gene centred view.

  71. All very good points…..

    All very good points…..I especially like the Nobel Prize.

    In reply to #94 by mr_DNA:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very le…

  72. I agree with you but would have rather you didn’t write it in the past tense.

    In reply to #61 by cmirana:

    Richard Dawkins’ contribution to the freedom of humanity from the tyranny of religion will be long remembered.
    He had the courage to fight against ‘ignorance’ without fear or favor. He persevered. He stood up like a giant and he liberated all those who were willing to listen.
    All the books he author…

  73. Congrats! Well deserved. I was pleased to part of the May 1st showing of the “Unbelievers” at Hot Docs. And, many of us were extremely happy to be able to shake Richard’s hand outside of the theatre. It was a huge pleasure and great experience to see Richard and Lawrence in person.

  74. Well done Richard,, for carrying light to darkest America and all your wonderful books.

  75. In reply to #95 by Bob Russell:

    All very good points…..

    All very good points…..I especially like the Nobel Prize.

    In reply to #94 by mr_DNA:

    In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who ha..

    Sir Richard Dawkins does have a nice ring to it. .

  76. With respect I don’t think that Richard’s thinking is ground breaking or innovative but he’s got the balls to stand up and confront issues which up until now have been kept behind closed doors and minds for far too long..I’ll stand shoulder to shoulder with him and support free,intelligent thinkers forever.

  77. In reply to #7 by Bob Russell:

    How is it that Richard Dawkins has not been knighted? I do not know what his feelings on it would be but it strikes me as very odd that this man who has done so much for humanism, science, rationality and his country would not have received a knighthood at the very least. When I look at some of the…

    I doubt Professor Dawkins would accept a knighthood from the head of the Church of England. Get real! Let’s reserve knighthoods for paedophiles and theives, stick to the status quo.

  78. I can Imagine that the evolutionary biologist beats four Nobel prize. Good work and congratulations richard.


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