- Darwin’s natural heir, the Darwin of the 21st century, The New Darwin, Modern-day Darwin
- Renowned Ant Researcher, The world’s leading authority on ants, Ant Man
- Famed entomologist and pioneer in the field of sociobiology, The foremost proponent of sociobiology
- Pioneer of Evolutionary Biology, Father of biodiversity, Conservation giant.
- 150 awards and medals around the world.
- 40 honorary doctorates.
- Honorary member of more than 30 world renowned institutions.
- One of the 25 most influential personalities in America,
- One of the 100 Leading Environmentalists of the Century.
- One of the 100 most important intellectuals in the world.
- One of the 100 most important scientists in history.
- One of the 100 most influential scientists in history.
- One of the Greatest Minds of the Last 100 Years.
It’s impossible to summarize in a simple sentence the life and work of Edward Osborne Wilson. Brilliant, prolific, ackowledged, and inevitably controversial.
Sociobiology, consilience, eusociality, superorganisms, the Encyclopedia of Life, Half Earth… He is likely most cited by his seminal insight about our human condition: “We have created a Star Wars civilization, with Stone Age emotions, medieval institutions, and godlike technology.” You can find it at the very beginning of The Social Conquest of Earth.
In the prologue of the book, he states:
THERE IS NO GRAIL more elusive or precious in the life of the mind than the key to understanding the human condition…
And he chooses Paul Gauguin’s final struggle and seminal painting to illustrate our fight for meaning: D’où venons-nous ? Que sommes-nous ? Où allons-nous?
To me, EO Wilson is one of those minds that, when you read it, makes you believe that it is possible to understand the game…
Selfishness beats altruism within single groups. Altruistic groups beat selfish groups.
Everything else is commentary.
Ad astra, Mr. Wilson
Image, via NYT