Here are some excerpts from the condensed version of Dawkins’ new book:
I was christened Clinton Richard Dawkins. By a strange quirk, Charles Darwin also has the initials CRD. I often think how proud he would have been to share them with me. Although, by reductio ad absurdum, everyone must be related to one another if you go back far enough, I propose to start this memoir with my grandfather, Clinton Evelyn, the first Dawkins to go to Balliol College, Oxford. The eulogy I wrote for his funeral still brings tears to my eyes.
In the early 1970s, I started work on The Selfish Gene. I had no idea when I was writing the first chapter just how remarkable the book would be, as it had seemed self-evident for more than a decade to me that panglossian theories were erroneous and that natural selection took place at the genetic level. What I hadn’t then realised was my remarkable ability to be right about absolutely everything: the consequences of that realisation will follow in a later volume.