CHARACTERS Ä An Appetite for Wonder The Making of a Scientist

An Appetite for Wonder The Making of a Scientist

CHARACTERS An Appetite for Wonder The Making of a Scientist

And the peculiarities of colonial life right after World War II At boarding school despite a near religious encounter with an Elvis record he began his career as a skeptic by refusing to kneel for prayer in chapel Despite some inspired teaching throughout primary and secondary school it was only when he got to Oxford that his intellectual curiosity took full flightArriving at Oxford in 1959 when undergraduates left Elvis behind for Bach or the Modern Jazz uartet Dawkins began to study zoology and was introduced to some of the university's legendary mentors as well as its tutorial system It's to this uniue educational system that Dawkins credits his awakening as it invited young people to become scholars by encouraging them to pose rigorous uestions and scour the library for the latest Richard Dawkins gets a bad rap Sure I understand he can be critical of religion and maybe a little arrogant He thinks the world would be better off without religion but never advocates its banishment So what I hate beets but i won't stop others from eating them But Dawkins has never knocked on my door at 7 AM and shoved a religious pamphlet in my face He never insisted on his ideas being read in Sunday school to provide a balanced viewpoint And he never threatened eternal punishment if I don't read his books So I'll give him a passThe sad thing about people's opinions of Dawkins is that they come almost exclusively from his book The God Delusion Many do not realize that his reputation as a world class scientist was first cemented with the book The Selfish Gene in the 70s Dawkins's research into genes and evolutionary science plus his popular boos introducing the topic to the masses would trouble no one except those who think the Bible was meant to be a book of scienceAn Appetite For Wonders will disappoint those looking for the abrasive Dawkins The main focus in this memoir which goes from his birth to the publishing of The Selfish Gene is on the influences and revelations that led to his love of science He only pauses on his religious background briefly mentioning he had two short conversions one from his childhood indoctrination to Anglican Christianity and another through the music of Elvis If someone as cool as Elvis believes in God it must be right But Dawkins was interested in the area of biology Any insight on the development of his theological views or lack of will need to wait for the second memoirYet there is much here to rejoice about His growing up in Africa with his two naturalist parents His experience in the boys' schools of England I thinks it says of lot about Dawkins that when he writes about the notorious hazing traditions of British schools he downplays his own experiences but writes emphatically about what others went through Also his first job at Berkeley in California not only tells in detail of his education in science but about his budding concern with social issues Yet there are two areas that make this memoir drag than necessary His detailed ancestral tree may be of importance to him but makes for a slow beginning And when he writes about his first research projects his love for research come through but his insistence on describing it in detail to what will probably be a layman reader really halts the narrative If one wants to explore that part thoroughly he is likely to read The Selfish Gene or The Blind Watchman both books I highly recommendYet Dawkins' autobiographical endeavor is uite enjoyable and has plenty of interesting revelations about this extraordinary scientist If you are already a Dawkins fan like me it is a must For the regular reader or those whose opinion of him is only derived from The God Delusion it might be helpful too

REVIEW ´ SIGMAENCLOSURES.CO.UK Ñ Richard Dawkins

Research rather than textbook teaching to any kind of test His career as a fellow and lecturer at Oxford took an unexpected turn when in 1973 a serious strike in Britain caused prolonged electricity cuts and he was forced to pause his computer based research Provoked by the then widespread misunderstanding of natural selection known as group selection and inspired by the work of William Hamilton Robert Trivers and John Maynard Smith he began to write a book he called jokingly my bestseller It was of course The Selfish GeneHere for the first time is an intimate memoir of the childhood and intellectual development of the evolutionary biologist and world famous atheist and the story of how he came to write what is widely held to be one of the most important books of the twentieth century ‎‫‏‬I thought I would LOVE this memoir but I only liked itI'm not saying that I got disappointed but I wanted this book to give me something else Something interesting ‫ ‬This book which is the first part of Dawkins' biography tells the story of Richard Dawkins' childhood and his journey in science as a student until his GREATEST accomplishment the publication of The Selfish Gene To be honest I didn't find the story very interesting It was an ordinary story even boring at certain points The most beautiful and enlightening parts were when Dawkins wrote about the importance of educationTonight I will start reading the second part of the biography which is supposed to be far interesting hopefully

Richard Dawkins Ñ 1 CHARACTERS

With the 2006 publication of The God Delusion the name Richard Dawkins became a byword for ruthless skepticism and brilliant impassioned articulate impolite debate San Francisco Chronicle his first memoir offers a personal viewHis first book The Selfish Gene caused a seismic shift in the study of biology by proffering the gene centered view of evolution It was also in this book that Dawkins coined the term meme a unit of cultural evolution which has itself become a mainstay in contemporary cultureIn An Appetite for Wonder Richard Dawkins shares a rare view into his early life his intellectual awakening at Oxford and his path to writing The Selfish Gene He paints a vivid picture of his idyllic childhood in colonial Africa peppered with sketches of his colorful ancestors charming parents 'An Appetite For Wonder' is the first part of Richard's autobiography and cover his life up until the publication of The Selfish Gene as well as some material about his parents and grandparents before he came along It is written in the usual Dawkins style witty charming and self effacing and filled with anecdotes about great people in his life and how their influence has helped him become the man he is todayThe initial part of the book deals with Richard's lineage and while it is a bit dry it is necessary due to the influence that this lineage has had on his family and himself Yes he has come from a long line of what some people would call privileged families but as he states at the end of the book I cannot deny a measure of unearned privilege when I compare my childhood boyhood and youth to others less fortunate I do not apologise for that privilege any than a man should apologise for the genes on his face but I am very conscious of itHis childhood in Africa was not ideal but as he shows having two loving parents made all the difference And amazingly he was not the ideal of a child biologist much to the consternation to his biologist parents His childhood was very different from other famous biologists and zoologists such as Gerald Durrell's as depicted in My Family and Other Animals His school days were spent in boarding schools both in Africa and then later back in Britain where he did not necessarily shine in all subjects It is astounding that an above average child at school has gone on to become one of the leaders in his field I guess that it is testament to the amount of hard work and tenacity he has put into his life starting from his late youthRichard's high school marks barely scraped him through into Oxford despite his senior high school years being a long hard slog He was not accepted to study biochemistry and was encouraged to and accepted into the zoology program Anyway enough with the summary How good of a read is this Well it is a difficult book to talk about as a whole The sections on his childhood are not unlike other autobiographic reminisces from an interesting person There are great and witty anecdotes stories of danger and conflict and and some reflections that are inspiring But the book just like his life changes dramatically when Richard starts researching at Oxford The latter half of his book concerns mainly of explaining his research at the time And truthfully it can be a bit dense Probably on par with some of his dense explanations in his other books Not to mean that it is not as interesting as his youth it is just a very large change in styleSo anybody looking for charming stories and anecdotes may be happy with the section on his childhood but may falter at the density of his writing on his research I guess that is my main warning to others It may not be the ideal Dawkins read for anyone who has not read his books before and should probably be left until you have read a few of his other books Indeed I hope to get some under my belt before attempting the next volume expected in a couple of years I Am Jane Goodall gene centered view of evolution It was also in this book that Dawkins coined the term meme a unit of cultural evolution which has itself become a mainstay in contemporary cultureIn An Appetite for Wonder Richard Dawkins shares a rare view into his early life his intellectual awakening at Oxford and his path to writing The Selfish Gene He paints a vivid picture of his idyllic childhood in colonial Africa peppered with sketches of his colorful ancestors charming parents 'An Appetite For Wonder' is the first part of Richard's autobiography and cover his life up until the publication of The Selfish Gene as well as some material about his parents and Attentat mot Vita huset (Kane & Abel, grandparents before he came along It is written in the usual Dawkins style witty charming and self effacing and filled with anecdotes about Twenty Questions great people in his life and how their influence has helped him become the man he is todayThe initial part of the book deals with Richard's lineage and while it is a bit dry it is necessary due to the influence that this lineage has had on his family and himself Yes he has come from a long line of what some people would call privileged families but as he states at the end of the book I cannot deny a measure of unearned privilege when I compare my childhood boyhood and youth to others less fortunate I do not apologise for that privilege any than a man should apologise for the O Melhor Livro Sobre Nada genes on his face but I am very conscious of itHis childhood in Africa was not ideal but as he shows having two loving parents made all the difference And amazingly he was not the ideal of a child biologist much to the consternation to his biologist parents His childhood was very different from other famous biologists and zoologists such as Gerald Durrell's as depicted in My Family and Other Animals His school days were spent in boarding schools both in Africa and then later back in Britain where he did not necessarily shine in all subjects It is astounding that an above average child at school has Lost and Fondue (A Cheese Shop Mystery, gone on to become one of the leaders in his field I Who Were the Wright Brothers? guess that it is testament to the amount of hard work and tenacity he has put into his life starting from his late youthRichard's high school marks barely scraped him through into Oxford despite his senior high school years being a long hard slog He was not accepted to study biochemistry and was encouraged to and accepted into the zoology program Anyway enough with the summary How The Expat Diaries good of a read is this Well it is a difficult book to talk about as a whole The sections on his childhood are not unlike other autobiographic reminisces from an interesting person There are The Hired Man great and witty anecdotes stories of danger and conflict and and some reflections that are inspiring But the book just like his life changes dramatically when Richard starts researching at Oxford The latter half of his book concerns mainly of explaining his research at the time And truthfully it can be a bit dense Probably on par with some of his dense explanations in his other books Not to mean that it is not as interesting as his youth it is just a very large change in styleSo anybody looking for charming stories and anecdotes may be happy with the section on his childhood but may falter at the density of his writing on his research I Death of a Ghost guess that is my main warning to others It may not be the ideal Dawkins read for anyone who has not read his books before and should probably be left until you have read a few of his other books Indeed I hope to The Monk of Mokha get some under my belt before attempting the next volume expected in a couple of years

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