Prominent atheist Richard Dawkins coming to Rochester in June
(THE MED CITY BEAT) - One of academia's most outspoken critics of religion will speak to a crowd in Rochester this summer.
"An Evening with Richard Dawkins" is scheduled for June 9 at the Mayo Civic Center. Tickets for the show went on sale Wednesday.
Dawkins is an emeritus fellow of New College, Oxford and was the University of Oxford's Professor for Public Understanding of Science from 1995 until 2008. He is well known for his criticism of creationism and intelligent design — and frequently travels across the world to speak in support of evolution.
He came to prominence with his 1976 book The Selfish Gene, which popularized the gene-centred view of evolution and introduced the term "meme." The first few lines of the book say all you need to know:
Other notable book releases include: The Blind Watchmaker (1986), Climbing Mount Improbable (1996) and The God Delusion (2006). His most recent book, An Appetite for Wonder, is an autobiography.
His around-the-world speaking tour is the focus of a recent documentary, The Unbelievers, which also features appearances by Woody Allen, Stephen Colbert and Stephen Hawking.
Dawkins frequently cites Charles Darwin as having a strong influence on his life and education. He told the National Geographic Channel Online in 2009:
Dawkins will be joined by special guest Julia Sweeney, a film director, author and comedian who worked on "Saturday Night Live" from 1990-94.
General admission to the show is $34. VIP tickets are $249, and include a pre-show reception with Dawkins from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. (show starts at 7 p.m.).