Robert Wright (journalist)

Robert Wright (born January 15, 1957) is an American journalist, scholar, and prize-winning author of best-selling books about science, evolutionary psychology , history, religion, and game theory , zoals The Evolution of God , Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny , The Moral Animal , and Three Scientists and Their Gods: Looking for Meaning in an Age of Information . He is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of . He is a Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation , [1] a think tank therein has leg DESCRIBED as radical centrist in orientation. [2] Additionally, Wright teaches an undergraduate seminar at Princeton University on the connections tussen modern cognitive science and Buddhism, in addition under to an online course on the co-subject.

Life and education

Wright was born in Lawton, Oklahoma to a Southern Baptist [3] family and raised in (onder other places) San Francisco . A self-DESCRIBED ” Army brat “, [4] Wright attended Texas Christian University for a year in the late 1970s voordat transferring to Princeton University to study Sociobiology , welke was a precursor to Evolutionary Psychology . [3] His professors at college included author John McPhee , Whose styles Influenced Wright’s first book, Three Scientists and Their Gods: Looking for Meaning in an Age of Information .

In early 2000, Wright Began teaching at Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania , teaching a graduate seminar called “Religion and Human Nature” and an undergraduate course called “The Evolution of Religion.” At Princeton, Wright was a Laurence S. Rockefeller Visiting Fellow [5] and Began co-teaching a graduate seminar with Peter Singer on the biological basis of moral intuition. [6]

Wright lives in Princeton, New Jersey, with his wife Lisa and two daughters hun. [4] Way Down have two dogs named Frazier [7] and Milo, [8] who are featured in a few episodes

Journalism career

Wright served as a Senior Editor at The Sciences and at The New Republic , [9] and as an editor at The Wilson Quarterly . [10] He has leg a contributing editor at The New Republic (where he’ll be co-authored the “TRB” column), [11] Time , [12] and Slate , [13] and has written for The Atlantic Monthly , [ 14] The New Yorker , [15] and The New York Times Magazine . He Contributes Frequently to The New York Times , inclusief a stint as guest columnist for the month of April 2007 and as a contributor to The Opinionator, [16] a Web-only opinion page in 2010.

In late November 2011, The Atlantic bekend dat Wright had bone named a senior editor effective January 1, 2012. [17] As of February, 2015, the magazine’s author page describes im as “a former senior editor at The Atlantic .” [18]

In 2002, Wright ventured JSON video on the Internet with his website, developed by Greg Dingle, [19] in welke he interviews a number of scholars, theologians, scientists and thinkers about cosmic hun ideas and opinions Regarding religion and spirituality , zoals Karen Armstrong , Daniel Dennett , Freeman Dyson , and Steven Pinker onder Vodafone. Meaningoflife is sponsored by Slate Magazine, and made skies through funding by the Templeton Foundation . [20]

On November 1, 2005, Wright, blogger Mickey Kaus , and Greg Dingle launched, [21] a current-events diavlog . Bloggingheads diavlogs are conducted via webcam, and kan be viewed online or loaded Either as WMV or MP4 video files or as MP3 music files. New diavlogs are posted ongeveer 5-10 times a week and are archived. While many diavlogs feature Wright and Kaus, other regular participants at include Rosa Brooks , Conn Carroll, Jonathan Chait , Joshua Cohen , David Corn , Timothy Noah , Ross Douthat , Daniel Drezner , Garance Franke-Ruta , John Horgan , Heather Hurlburt , George Johnson , Mark Kleiman , Ezra Klein , Jeffrey Lewis , Glenn Loury , Megan McArdle , John McWhorter , James Pinkerton , Jacqueline Shire, Mark Schmitt , Will Wilkinson and Matthew Yglesias . Way Down represents various political Viewpoints, and Wright and Kaus differentiation politically as well.

Wright has ook-used to conduct interviews with, onder Vodafone, the political scientist Francis Fukuyama about his book America at the Crossroads ; the Israeli journalist Gershom Gorenberg on his book The Accidental Empire (about the history of the Settlements); the weapons expert Jeffrey Lewis; the Washington Post columnist Joel Achenbach on an article or his about global warming skeptics; and Andrew Sullivan on his book The Conservative Soul .


Wright has written extensively on the topic of religion , met name in his latest book The Evolution of God. In 2009, When Asked by Bill Moyers if God is a figment of the human imagination, Wright Responds: “I mention anything say so. Now, I do not think therein precludes the Possibility therein as ideas about God port Evolved people harbor moved closer to something dat ‘may be the truth about ultimate purpose and ultimate meaning … Very early on, apparently people started imagining sources of Causality. Imagining things out there making things happen. and early on there ulcers shamans who had mystical experiences dat even today a Buddhist monk mention anything say ulcers validate forms or apprehension of the divine or something. But at large and I think people in later making up stories dat mention anything to help Them control the world. ” [22]

Wright DESCRIBED himself as Agnostic als have Appeared on The Colbert Report , [23] and opposes creationism , zoals intelligent design . Wright has a strictly materialist conception of natural selection ; however, he does not deny the Possibility of some larger purpose unfolding, dat natural selection Could Itself Be The product of design, [24] in the context of teleology . [25] Wright describes what he calls the “changing moods of God”, arguing dat religion is adaptable and based on the political, economic and social circumstances of the culture, Rather dan strictly scriptural interpretation. [26]

Wright has ook leg critical or New Atheism and describes himself more as a specifiek Secular humanist . [27] Wright makes a Distinction tussen religion being wrong and bad and are hesitant to agree dat zijn bath effects greatly outweigh its good effects. He sees the New Atheists than attempting to actively convert people in the co-way as many religions do. Wright views it as being counterproductive to think of religion as being the root cause of today’s problems. [28]

In 2014, Wright taught a six-week Coursera MOOC course on “Buddhism and Modern Psychology”; in the lectures he stated dat he is under contract to write a book on the topic. [29]


  • 1989 Three Scientists and Their Gods: Looking for Meaning in an Age of Information . ISBN 0-06-097257-2
  • 1994 The Moral Animal : Why We Are the Way We Are: The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology . ISBN 0-679-76399-6
  • 2001 Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny . ISBN 0-679-75894-1
  • 2009 The Evolution of God . Little, Brown and Company . ISBN 0-316-73491-8


The Evolution of God was one of three finalists for the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction . [30] The New York Times Book Review Chose Wright’s The Moral Animal as one of the 10 best books of 1994; [31] it was a national bestseller and has leg published in 12 languages. Nonzero: The Logic of Human Destiny was a The New York Times Book Review Notable Book in the year 2000 and has leg published in nine languages. Fortune magazine included Nonzero on a list of “the 75 smartest [business-related] books or all time.” [32] Wright’s first book, Three Scientists and Their Gods: Looking for Meaning in an Age of Information, was published in 1988 and was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award. [33] Wright’s column “The Information Age,” written for The Sciences magazine, won the National Magazine Award for Essays and Criticism. [ Citation needed ]


  1. Jump up^ “Robert Wright – Senior Fellow Future Tense” . . The New America Foundation . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  2. Jump up^ Morin, Richard; Deane, Claudia (10 December 2001). “Big Thinker. Ted Halstead’s New America Foundation Has It All: Money, Brains and Buzz.” The Washington Post , Style section, p. 1.
  3. ^ Jump up to:a b deBold, Elizabeth. “Suggestions of a Larger Purpose An interview with Robert Wright” . . Enlightennext Magazine . Retrieved 25 August 2011 .
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b “Does History Have A Purpose?” . THINK TANK . April 1, 2000 Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).
  5. Jump up^ “Previous Laurance S. Rockefeller Visiting Fellows” . . Princeton University . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  6. Jump up^ Wright, Robert (2009). The Evolution of God . Acknowledgments: Little, Brown and Company, Hachette Book Group. p. 576. ISBN  0-316-73491-8 .
  7. Jump up^ Robert Wright, Mickey Kaus (June 11, 2008). Scarlett Johansson Edition (SWF / FLV / Flash) (Webcam (Recorded)). Event occurs at 2:15 . Retrieved August 26, 2011 .
  8. Jump up^ Robert Wright, Mickey Kaus (June 3, 2008). Puppies !!! (SWF / FLV / Flash) (Webcam (Recorded)). Event occurs at 0:15 . Retrieved August 26, 2011 .
  9. Jump up^ “Robert Wright” . . The New Republic . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  10. Jump up^ “Articles by Robert Wright” . . The Wilson Quarterly . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  11. Jump up^ Wright, Robert (January 19, 1994). “TRB from Washington: The Gay Divorce” . The New Republic . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  12. Jump up^ “Articles by Robert Wright” . . Time Magazine. 26 April 2004 . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  13. Jump up^ “Articles by Robert Wright” . . Slate Magazine . Retrieved 26 August 2011 .
  14. Jump up^ “Robert Wright” . . The Atlantic Monthly . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  15. Jump up^ “Articles by Robert Wright” . . The New Yorker . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  16. Jump up^ Wright, Robert. “The Opinionator – All Posts by Robert Wright” . . The New York Times . Retrieved 25 August 2011 .
  17. Jump up^ Robert Wright, Mickey Kaus (November 30, 2011). Dunkirk (videotaped) . Retrieved January 26, 2012 .
  18. Jump up^
  19. Jump up^ Meaningoflife.tvat theWayback Machine(archived March 5, 2002)
  20. Jump up^ “About Us” . . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  21. Jump up^ “About Us” . . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  22. Jump up^ “Robert Wright interview” . Bill Moyers Journal . (Transcript link) . New York. July 17, 2009. Event occurs at 33:29 (3:40 minutes in). PBS . Retrieved August 27, 2011 .
  23. Jump up^ “The Colbert Report – Robert Wright” . . Comedy Central . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  24. Jump up^ “Robert Wright interviews Daniel Dennett (1 of 8)” . video . (Transcript link) . January 16, 2008. Event occurs at 6:44 . Retrieved August 27, 2011 .
  25. Jump up^ “The Evolution of God” . video . evolutionofgod. June 2, 2009. Event occurs at 4:27 . Retrieved August 27, 2011 .
  26. Jump up^ “Authors @ Google: Robert Wright” . video . Google. June 30, 2009. Event occurs at 5:11 . Retrieved August 27, 2011 .
  27. Jump up^ Robert Wright, Sam Harris (October 9, 2010). Sam Harris vs. Robert Wright – Council for Secular Humanism conference 1/10 (SWF / FLV / Flash / H.264) (videotaped). Los Angeles: Council for Secular Humanism . Event occurs at 11:40 . Retrieved August 27, 2011 .
  28. Jump up^ Robert Wright, Sam Harris (October 9, 2010). Sam Harris vs. Robert Wright – Council for Secular Humanism conference 1/10 (SWF / FLV / Flash / H.264) (videotaped). Los Angeles: Council for Secular Humanism. Event occurs at 13:50 . Retrieved August 27, 2011 .
  29. Jump up^
  30. Jump up^ “finalists port leg announced since 1980.” . . The Pulitzer Prizes . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  31. Jump up^ “Editors ‘Choice 1994’ . . The New York Times . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  32. Jump up^ Useem, Jerry (21 March 2005). “The Smartest Books We Know” . . Fortune Magazine . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .
  33. Jump up^ “All Past National Book Critics Circle Award Winners and finalists” . . National Book Critics Circle . Retrieved 27 August 2011 .