List of atheists (miscellaneous)

List of atheists (miscellaneous)


* John Baskerville (1706–1775): English typesetter, printing innovator and typefounder, designer of the typeface that bears his name. [Baskerville left directions that his body be buried "in a Conical Building in my own premises Hearetofore used as a mill which I have lately Raised Higher and painted and in a vault which I have prepared for It. This Doubtless to many may appear a Whim perhaps It is so—But it is a whim for many years Resolve'd upon, as I have a Hearty Contempt for all Superstition the Farce of a Consecrated Ground the Irish Barbarism of Sure and Certain Hopes &c I also consider Revelation as it is call'd Exclusive of the Scraps of Morality casually Intermixt with It to be the most Impudent Abuse of Common Sense which Ever was Invented to Befool Mankind." He also wrote the test for his epitaph: "Stranger—Beneath this Cone in Uncons [e] crated Ground / A Friend to the Liberties of mankind Directed his Body to be Inhum'd / May the Example Contribute to Emancipate thy mind / From the Idle Fears of Superstition / And the wicked arts of priesthood." Both quoted in James Mosley, [ 'Baskerville, John (1706–1775)'] , "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, 2004 (accessed May 7, 2008).] ["Baskerville, designer of the type that bears his name and one of Birmingham's best known citizens, was an atheist and anticleric whose will contained a vitriolic attack on the Church." 'Printer's Reburial Demanded', "The Times" March 9, 1963; pg. 6; Issue 55645; col A.]
* Sir Richard Branson (1950—): British entrepreneur, founder of the Virgin Group. [Richard Branson: "Losing My Virginity", p.239: "I do not believe in God, but as I sat there in the damaged [balloon] capsule, hopelessly vulnerable to the slightest shift in weather or mechanical fault, I could not believe my eyes." ]
* Felix Dennis (1947–): British magazine publisher and philanthropist. ["I don't read novels unless they are 25 years old, but I have a passion for biography, history, philosophy and popular science. The original popular science writer was Charles Darwin in "The Voyage of the Beagle". I must have read it 25 times. My favourite modern writer is Loren Eiseley, who wrote very poetically. I get consolation from such books, maybe because I waver between atheism and agnosticism." Felix Dennis interviewed by Jodie Jones, "The Daily Telegraph", March 29, 2008, Weekend, Pg. 3.]
* Larry Flynt (1942–): American publisher and the head of Larry Flynt Publications. [Flynt writes "I have left my religious conversion behind and settled into a comfortable state of atheism" in the epilogue of his autobiography "An Unseemly Man: My Life As A Pornographer, Pundit And Social Outcast" by Larry Flynt and Kenneth Ross (1996) ISBN 0-7871-1143-0]
* Stephen Girard (1750–1831): French sailor turned American banker and philanthropist.cite journal | last = Gray | first = Carole | title = The Atheist Who Saved The United States (...and the thanks he got for it) | journal = The American Atheist | volume = 37 | issue = 2 | pages = 34-44 | date = Spring 1999 | url = | quote = One of his longtime employees, whose father had also worked for Stephen, said of him, "on the subject of religion, his opinions were atheistical. Let not the reader start, to find himself in company with one, who utterly disbelieved in all modes of a future existence, and who rejected with inward contempt every formulary of religion, as idle, vain, and unmeaning. Yet such were the convictions of Girard, held to his dying hour, and perpetuated in his last testament as a legacy to future generations .... He was known to be totally irreligious; and to attempt to conceal what is notorious, would be to suppress one of the most extraordinary features of his character."]
* Allan Pinkerton (1819–1884): Scottish-born American detective and spy, best known for creating the Pinkerton Agency, the first detective agency of the United States. ["Although christened by a Baptist minister in the Gorbals (August 25, 1819), he had a churchless upbringing and was a lifelong atheist." Richard Davenport-Hines, [ 'Pinkerton, Allan (1819–1884)'] , "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, 2004 (accessed May 2, 2008).]
* Graeme Samuel (19??–): Australian businessman, currently serving as the chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission. ["Well in my own mind I'm absolutely certain. I'm not agnostic, I'm an atheist, but that's a view that's been formed over I guess, 45 years of thinking and of analysing and just - and I have no embarrassment about it, no shame about it, nor any pride. It's my way of life, my way of thinking. I'm an atheist. And I have to say to you that although there are still many who strongly adhere to religions of one form or another, I find many others that when you actually out yourself as an atheist, say, 'Yes, well so am I'." [ Terry Lane interviews Graeme Samuel] , BigIdeas, ABC Radio National, May 28, 2006 (Accessed July 2, 2007)]
* Sir Clive Sinclair (1940–): British entrepreneur and inventor of the world's first 'slim-line' electronic pocket calculator and early personal computers. ["Oh God no," says Sir Clive Sinclair. "I was once asked [to be a godparent] and I said I can't, I'm an atheist. Actually I think I did have a couple, once, but I can't say I looked after them. Sort of lost them, or forgot about them." Rosie Millard, 'Godparenthood that rests on fame, not faith', The Independent (London), February 28, 1998, Page 15.]
* George Soros (1930–): Hungarian-born investor, philanthropist and writer. [Steve Kroft: Are you a religious man? Soros: No. Kroft: Do you believe in God? Soros: No. "60 Minutes", broadcast December 20, 1998.]
* Warren Buffett (1930–): American-born investor and philanthropist. ["He did not subscribe to his family's religion. Even at a young age he was too mathematical, too logical, to make the leap of faith. He adopted his father's ethical underpinnings, but not his belief in an unseen divinity." --from Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist, by Roger Lowenstein (Doubleday, 1995), page 13.]
* Christer Sturmark (1964–): Swedish IT entrepreneur and chairman of The Swedish Humanist Organisation. [sv icon "Translation:" I am also an atheist. I find that just about everybody are atheists. The religions of the world has created many gods. Hinduism has millions. Most of the people I meet that call themselves Christians are atheists when it comes to all gods, except for one. [ Jag är en sökare!] ]
* Dana White (1969–): American entrepreneur and current president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), a mixed martial arts organization. [ "I don't believe in God, the devil, ghosts or any of that shit. But I'm still fascinated by religion -- how violent and crazy it is. That stuff sticks with you." "Playboy Magazine", Sept 2008, pg. 48. ]
* Will Wyatt (1942–): British media consultant and company director, formerly a journalist, television producer and senior executive at the BBC. ["Mr Wyatt, an atheist, said that he had no axe to grind, and was struck by how much more different - "and accurate" - the BBC's description of Christianity was, where the birth of Jesus was mentioned as being "believed by Christians" and that Jesus "claimed" that he spoke with the authority of God." Hugh Davies, 'BBC site guilty of 'cringeing' ', "Daily Telegraph", February 8, 2006, Pg. 7.]
* Mark Zuckerberg (1984–): Founder and CEO of Facebook [ [ Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook] ] [Zuckerberg "considers himself an atheist." [ Just How Much Do We Want to Share On Social Networks?] , by Vauhini Vara, "The Wall Street Journal", November 28, 2007 (Accessed March 30, 2008).]


* Dave Allen (1936–2005): Irish comedian, popular on United Kingdom and Australian television in the 1960s, 1970s and also in the 1990s. ["Allen had little time for those who unquestioningly accept the tenets of any creed or system of thought. He applied this stricture equally to himself, and used humour to undermine even his own scepticism ("I'm an atheist, thank God"). [...] "His baffled humanity," wrote Charles Spencer, the theatre critic of The Daily Telegraph, in 1993, "his perplexity in the face of life's mysteries and irritations, are the qualities that make him such a fine and sometimes moving comedian. He's a blaspheming atheist on the side of the angels." " Obituary of Dave Allen, Daily Telegraph, March 12, 2005, Pg. 029.]
* Keith Allen (1953–): British comedian, actor, singer and writer, father of Lilly Allen. ["One of the many reasons Allen made the documentary was to explore his own atheism. Unlike most non-believers, he claims, in all seriousness, to have once seen God. It was at Glastonbury during the 1980s, and (as is the case with most of the splendid anecdotes that litter his conversation), it involved enough mind-altering substances to stun a baby elephant. [...] Like any considered atheist, particularly one who will burn in Hell, he lives according to a moral code that refuses to romanticise things like love, or devotion." Guy Adams, [ Serious documentary maker? Is Keith Allen having a laugh?] , "The Independent" June 21, 2007 (accessed April 25, 2008).]
* Wil Anderson (1974–): Australian television, radio and stand-up comedian, former host of ABC's "The Glass House". ['Of course, Anderson has never avoided controversy, but this show promises to be his most contentious yet. As an out-and-proud atheist, he's asking, "If the world truly does have an intelligent design, why is everything so f---ed?"'—Lallo, Michael (April 5, 2007), [ Wil to Succeed] , "The Age", Fairfax Media. Retrieved November 15, 2007.]
* Matt Besser(1967–): American comedian. [""My name is Matt Besser, and I'm an Arkansas Razorback. My father is a Jew from Little Rock, Ark., my mother was a Christian from Harrison, Ark., and somehow I'm an atheist now living in L.A. I am a Razorback living in the Razorback diaspora." Thus begins "Woo Pig Sooie", Matt Besser's one-man comedic rant that fearlessly confronts all the folly and confusion of what it means to be religious in America."' [ Razor Sharp] ', "Nashville Scene", June 1, 2006 (accessed August 20, 2008).]
* Abie Philbin Bowman (19??–): Irish comedian and columnist, writer/director/performer of "Jesus: The Guantanamo Years". ["Don't expect Jerry Springer-style controversy, however. Bowman, an atheist, has found that "most Christians are so disgusted by Guantanamo that I don't get many people saying it's offensive". And playing Jesus has even infiltrated his own personality: "I feel myself being more humble and trying to understand people with compassion rather than getting angry." " Emma John, 'A funny thing happened on the way to redemption', "The Guardian", August 14, 2006, G2, Pg. 22.]
* Marcus Brigstocke (1973–): English comedian, satirist and presenter of The Late Edition. [During an episode of The Late Edition filmed in October 2007, Brigstocke was presented with an Out Campaign t-shirt by his guest and out-spoken Atheist Richard Dawkins to which Brigstocke replied: "Look at that. Outed, outed as an Atheist and proud to be so" [] ]
* George Carlin (1937–2008): American comedian, actor and author; outspoken atheist who has described religion as being "the greatest bullshit story ever told." [Quotes from "There Is No God," "You Are All Diseased". Carlin says on the same track that "there is no God. None, not one, no God, never was."]
* Adam Carolla (1964–): American comedian, actor and comedy writer. [When asked by Penn Jillette if he was an atheist, Carolla replied "Yes." Interview on Penn Radio, 09-Mar-2006. [ Audio] hosted at [ Penn Fans website] . Accessed October 29, 2007.]
* Jimmy Carr (1972–): English-Irish comedian. ["There's no God - grow up!". cite video|people=Jimmy Carr|title=Jimmy Carr Comedian|medium=DVD|publisher=Channel 4 DVD|date=2007]
* Pat Condell (1951–): English stand up comedian, writer and secularist. [ [ Pat Condell: interview - Features - Comedy - Time Out London ] ]
* Billy Connolly (1942–): Scottish comedian, musician and presenter, also known as an actor in films such as Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events and Mrs. Brown. ["Connolly has tackled drama before, notably in the film Mrs Brown, with Dame Judi Dench, but he's never portrayed anyone like Father Joe, who is psychic and possibly deranged. "I was brought up as a Catholic," Connolly says. "Aye, I have a cousin who is a nun and another cousin who is a missionary priest in Pakistan." He pauses and smiles. "And I am an atheist." " Elaine Lipworth interviewing Connolly, ' [ No laughing matter] ', "Independent" (Dublin), August 1, 2008 (accessed August 1, 2008).]
* David Cross (1964–): American actor and comedian. [Appearance on ABC's "Politically Incorrect" (March 9, 1998) "I was born Jewish, but I am an atheist. I don't believe in God." [] ]
* Catherine Deveny (1968–): Australian comedy writer, stand-up comedian and sometimes controversial opinion columnist in the Age newspaper. ["I don't give a stuff what people believe in, but it won't stop me poking at it or prodding it. Why should religion be any exemption? Telling me I'm going to hell won't bother me because I have the Flying Spaghetti Monster, the Invisible Pink Unicorn and Bertrand Russell's Teapot in my heart. Google them if you are in the market for some red hot enlightenment. Over the past couple of weeks Catholic-bashing has been elevated to the level of an extreme sport. Put your hand down at the back there, I'm allowed to. I spent every Sunday for the first 18 years of my life sitting in a medieval torture chamber listening to a bloke bang on about his imaginary friend who did magic tricks. Then the next 20 years massaging, editing and pruning the brainwashing into something that fit until suddenly I woke up one day and realised I was an atheist. I wasn't searching for anything. I wasn't dabbling or questioning. I wasn't having any kind of spiritual breakdown. I just opened my eyes one day, looked around and realised that I had once been standing in a house and one by one the walls had collapsed and there was no longer a house there. I was standing out in the open. It was very liberating." Catherine Deveny, ' [ Red hot enlightenment led me to believe in one fewer god] ', July 23, 2008 (accessed July 22, 2008, 13.00 BST).]
* Ben Elton (1959–): English comedian, writer and director. ["The comedian [...] said Britons should be taught the essentials of Christianity, if only for cultural reasons. But he also said that "lack of faith" should be taught in schools. "I think the concept that faith in itself is a good thing should be questioned from day one, which it isn't," he said. "There's a presumption that if you're a religious leader you are in some way already halfway up to the moral high ground and your opinion has more relevance than anyone else's." [ BBC 'too scared to allow jokes about Islam'] , April 2, 2008. (Accessed April 3, 2008)] ["Elton described himself as an atheist but said he was in favour of God defined as "the mystery of the universe". His children attend a Church of England school and he said he attended church occasionally." [ BBC 'scared' of Islam jokes, says Elton] , "Guardian", April 2, 2008 (accessed April 3, 2008)]
* Janeane Garofalo (1964–): American actor and comedian. ["Garofalo said "I am a proud atheist." [ Freethought Radio interview with Janeane Garofalo] , May 26, 2007 (quote starts at 19:32). (Accessed June 9, 2007)]
* Ricky Gervais (1961–): British comedian and actor, co-creator of the original version of "The Office". [Gervais states he is an atheist in his "Animals" live DVD. Also, in a PBS "Fresh Air" interview, December 18, 2006 he said "I'm an atheist," and that Homer Simpson was the closest thing for him to God.] [In an interview with "Daily Mirror", Gervais said: "I'm basically a 'do unto others' type person. I don't have any religious feelings because I'm an atheist, but I live my life like there's a God. And if there was he'd probably love me." See [ Official homepage] (Accessed December 21, 2007).]
* Kathy Griffin (1963–): American comedian. [Speaking to Sacramento’s "Outword Magazine", Griffin said: "...I think I’m getting more atheist because of the way the country is getting more into bible-thumping." See [ Quotelines] , by Rex Wockner at Windy City Times (Accessed August 29, 2006).]
* Andy Hamilton (1954–): English comedian, game show panellist, director and comedy scriptwriter for television and radio. ["A book that changed me ... The Bible. It turned me into an atheist." ' [ Andy Hamilton, comedian] ', "The Independent" (London), March 10, 2007 (accessed July 22, 2008).]
* Jeremy Hardy (1961–): English alternative comedian, frequently on BBC Radio 4 shows such as The News Quiz and I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. ["Did you know... Jeremy is an atheist... He got into trouble for bringing into question Jesus's sexuality on the News Quiz... He supports the reunification of Northern Ireland with Eire..." ' [ Previews: Jeremy Hardy at Y Theatre] ', BBC Leicester, November 3, 2004 (accessed July 22, 2008).]
* Richard Herring (1967–): British comedian and writer, best known as part of Lee and Herring. ["In the programme for "It's Not the End of the World", Richard Herring, its writer and star, admits that, like the play's "make-believe character Ian Nathan," he first found out about Nostradamus in Weston-Super- Mare in 1984. On reading about the predicted apocalypse, 16-year-old Herring convinced himself that, to survive, he'd have to escape somewhere remote in July 1999. Even though he's now a "rational atheist", Herring made sure he had his just-in-case cake and ate it when he escaped to Fiji last month with "the convenient excuse of researching and writing this play"." Maeve Walsh, 'Edinburgh Festival Fringe', "The Independent" (London), August 22, 1999, Features, Pg. 6.]
* Robin Ince (1969–): English stand-up comedian, actor, writer and impressionist. ["As with most TV recordings, everything was running late and I had another gig not long after this one. Stephen Green was the only person who requested make up (such vanity must spit at the lord) while we atheists were left to be the pasty, snaggle-toothed demons we are presumed to be. [...] I told them how I couldn’t find a teacher amongst my friends who was not involved in a nativity and how I, as an atheist, was happy to see that wherever I travelled there were carol singers and Christmas things. Stephen Green decided he would not believe me and kept saying, 'I don't think he's as happy about that as he said'. Yes I am, I just don't like people being fed with lies. [...] As I walked off after expounding on my atheist ire, I was reminded of another terrifying moment of lazy theorising from the slack-eyed Christian propagandists and hack icons. They proudly declared how Christian the nation was according to the most recent census. Then, they whined about how few children knew where Jesus was born." Robin Ince, ' [ The day I went psycho on TV] ', "Chortle", 20 December 2007 (accessed 30 September 2008).]
* Eddie Izzard (1962–): English stand-up comedian and actor, winner of several awards. ["Izzard is now back on the road with "Stripped," his first national tour in five years. The comedian, who returns to Cleveland for two dates Friday and Saturday at the Palace Theatre, said his current material is based largely around the notion of God. Specifically, Izzard said over the past few years he's been transformed from an agnostic into an atheist and he's using "Stripped" as a vehicle to present his argument. "What's kind of interesting is America really seems to be locked in step with God," Izzard said. "I just see god and the devil inside of people, as opposed to being up in the clouds. And why would he be in the clouds, it's so damp. Why would he have 4.5 billion years of the Earth and only develop language over the past 100,000 years? Because you can't have religion without language. And if you look at the voting record of God, it's (expletive). There's too much death, pestilence, all of that hell. Why did he do all that and if he didn't do that, then what's the point of that? He isn't controlling everything. I'm sure the Jewish people prayed really hard during World War II and nothing seemed to happen. That's my big conclusion." " John Benson interviewing Izzard, [ Comedian Izzard finds edge on stage] , May 22, 2008 (accessed June 13, 2008).]
* Dom Joly (1967–): Award-winning British television comedian and journalist, best known as the star of Trigger Happy TV. [On the introduction by his children of a swearbox to his household, Joly wrote: "Our biggest area of contention at home is blasphemy. Jackson follows me round the house waiting for me to say "oh Jesus" or "for God's sake", two of my favourite expressions. I tried to get a ruling excluding these from punishment, on the grounds that I'm an atheist and don't consider them to be swear words." [ Dom Joly: It's 50p a swear word... and the pot stands at £75] , "The Independent", April 20, 2008 (accessed April 21, 2008).]
* Stewart Lee (1968–): English stand-up comedian, writer and director, best known as one half of Lee and Herring and for co-writing and directing the critically-acclaimed and controversial stage show . [" Nevertheless, they do take time to respond to their critics. "We're not ignorant," Lee says. "If a Christian writes and says they don't like it, I always write back explaining I'm an atheist and telling them where they can get more literature on the subject." " Janie Lawrence interviewing Lee and Herring, "The Independent" (London), December 14, 1996, Pg. 39.]
* Tim Minchin (1975–): Australian comedian, actor, composer, songwriter, pianist, musical director, winner of the 2005 Best Newcomer Perrier Comedy Award. ["It's not just his own pretensions that Minchin likes to skewer. He is a punchy atheist who devours scepticism in literature and podcasts. For example, he will announce mildly, "This is a song about anal sex and God", or croon an emotional ballad, the kind that wouldn't be out of place on a Whitlams album, about his profound scepticism of homeopathy." Jackie Maley interviewing Minchin, 'Scary weird little guy', "Sunday Age" (Melbourne, Australia), July 13, 2008, Section M, Preview; Pg. 24.]
* Dermot Morgan (1952–1998): Irish comedian and actor, who achieved international renown as Father Ted Crilly in the Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted. ["Craggy Island would soak up the irony. From beyond the grave, Dermot Morgan, a staunch atheist who savaged the Catholic Church, is delivering a final kick to the priests who gave him a hero's send-off." Rory Carroll, 'Catholic critic Father Ted still causing controversy', "The Guardian", April 23, 1998, Pg. 4.] [ [ Father Ted actor Dermot Morgan has died] ]
* Patton Oswalt (1969–): American actor and comedian. [" [Oswalt is] an atheist..." [ MySpace must be doing something right] , Chicago Sun-Times, Oct 5, 2006 by Andy Ihnatko (Accessed December 20, 2006)]
* Paula Poundstone (1959–): An American stand-up comedian. She is known for her quiet, self-deprecating style, political observations, and her trademark style of dress: a suit and tie. [Paula Poundstone has mentioned her atheism in several appearances on the radio show, Wait Wait...Don't Tell me. She also states that she is an atheist on her website. [] ]
* Arthur Smith (1954–): English alternative comedian and writer. ["Digger: What makes you laugh and what makes you sad? Arthur: Laugh... Woody Allen. Sad ... The patent mortality that lurks at the edge of one's vision. Digger: The fact that we know we're going to die? Arthur: Yes, I speak as a rationalist and an agnostic/atheist - the essential tragedy of the end of life." [ Digger talks to Arthur Smith, comedian and writer] , January 2008 (accessed July 15, 2008).]
* Linda Smith (1958–2006): English comedian and comedy writer, president of the British Humanist Association from 2004 until her death. ["But it was secondary school, Bexleyheath Comprehensive, that really put me off God. I suddenly thought in assembly that this was all rubbish, all these stupid old gits like the headmaster and the deputy headmaster reading out this piffle and all these sulky kids moving their mouths to these hymns. I do remember enquiring whether or not you could be removed from assembly on the grounds of being an atheist, but I was told that it didn't count. You could only be excluded if you were Jewish, Catholic or Muslim. But not believing in God was not a valid reason." Linda Smith, [ Anarchist with attitude: Laurie Taylor interviews Linda Smith] , "New Humanist" Volume 119 Issue September 5/October 2004 (accessed April 22, 2008)] ["An atheist from childhood, Linda Smith was appointed president of the British Humanist Society in 2004, declaring her intention to wake up a society which she felt had become stuck in the past." [ "Daily Telegraph" obituary: Linda Smith] , March 1, 2006 (accessed April 22, 2008).]
* Julia Sweeney (1959–): American actor and comedian. Alumna of "Saturday Night Live", author/performer of a one-woman autobiographical stage show about finding atheism: "Letting Go of God". [Interview with Sweeney discussing her atheism [] .]
* Mark Thomas (1963–): English comedian, presenter, political activist and reporter, best known for political stunts on his show, "The Mark Thomas Comedy Product" on UK Channel 4. ["I've been an atheist since the age of eight. A visiting pastor at church performed a magic trick that ended with him tapping a chalice and it filling with coins. I asked him how he did it and he said, 'All you need is faith,' When I got home I rushed down to the cellar and found an old Half Corona tin and a stick from my dad's wood box (he was a self-employed builder). I sat there for an hour and left an atheist." [ The world of Mark Thomas, comedian] , "Daily Telegraph", December 1, 2007 (accessed April 10, 2008).]
* Gene Weingarten (1951–): Humor writer for "The Washington Post". ["I found that Archie thing completely creepy. Is that because I am an atheist?" [] , "The Washington Post", August 7, 2007. (Accessed August 15, 2007)]


* G. E. M. de Ste. Croix (1910–2000): British historian, specializing in examining the classical era from a historical materialist perspective. ["A devoted only child, he acquired a profound knowledge of the Bible at his mother's knee; it may be supposed that he acquired there too his strong feelings about religion (in later life he often described himself as a 'politely militant' atheist), and a certain earnestness and missionary zeal that always marked him." R. C. T. Parker, [ 'Ste Croix, Geoffrey Ernest Maurice de (1910–2000)'] , "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edition, May 2007 (accessed May 2, 2008).]
* Constantine Fitzgibbon (1919–1983): Irish-American historian and novelist. ["Then in 1933 he was sent to Wellington College in England; this experience, he later insisted, turned him into an "atheist Marxist"." Mr Constantine Fitzgibbon: Novelist, biographer and historian, Obituaries, "The Times", March 25, 1983; pg. 16; Issue 61490; col F.]
* George Grote (1794–1871): English classical historian, best known in the field for a major work, the voluminous "History of Greece", still read. ["He became a utilitarian in philosophy, an associationist in psychology, an advocate of democratic reform in his politics, and a confirmed atheist." Joseph Hamburger: [ 'Grote, George (1794–1871)'] , "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, Sept 2004; online edition, May 2006 (accessed May 1, 2008).]
* Keith Hopkins (1934–2004): British classical historian and sociologist, professor of ancient history at the University of Cambridge 1985–2001. ["A World Full of Gods" set out to show this cacophony of different voices and views, incorporating, as Hopkins explained, "emphatic wonder, knowledge, pseudo-objective analysis, ignorance, competing assumptions and disagreements", of which his own position of 20th-century "Protestant atheism" was just one." 'Obituary of Professor Keith Hopkins: Scholar who introduced Sociology to Classics and wrote a post-modern account of the origins of Christianity', "The Daily Telegraph", March 17, 2004, Pg. 27.]
* Robin Lane Fox (1946–): English academic and historian, currently a Fellow of New College, Oxford, Lecturer in Ancient History at Exeter College, Oxford and University Reader in Ancient History. [In the preface to his book "The Unauthorized Version: Truth and Fiction in the Bible" (1991), Lane Fox states: "I write as an atheist, but there are Christian and Jewish scholars whose versions [of the history of the Bible] would be far more radical than mine." (Penguin paperback edition 2006, p.7; ISBN 978-0-14-102296-3)]
* James Murdoch (Scottish journalist) (1856–1921): Scottish scholar and journalist, whose three-volume "History of Japan" was the first comprehensive history of Japan in the English language. ["Murdoch arrived in Queensland in July 1881 as headmaster of the new Maryborough Grammar School. He became unpopular with the trustees (possibly because of his atheism and the deterioration of his marriage) and in March 1885 they summarily dismissed him for resisting their instructions that his staff give lessons at the Girls' Grammar School." D. C. S. Sissons: ' [ Murdoch, James (1856 - 1921)] ', "Australian Dictionary of Biography", Online Edition (accessed July 16, 2008).]
* Tony Parker (1923–1996): English oral historian, whose work was dedicated to giving a voice to British and American society's most marginalised figures. ["The oral historian Tony Parker, who has died aged 73, was an atheist. "If it turns out I'm wrong and I find myself in front of God, I shan't half have a lot to say on the subject." One reason Tony will have so much to say in heaven is because he spent so much of his time on earth being totally silent." Roger Graef, 'Obituary: Tony Parker: Courage and Convictions', "The Guardian", October 5, 1996, Pg. 18.]
* Pierre Vidal-Naquet (1930–2006): French classical historian. ["In 1950 Vidal-Naquet declared to his future wife Genevive Railhac that "as an atheist, history is for me the only possible substitute for religion"." Oswyn Murray, Obituary: Pierre Vidal-Naquet, "The Independent" (London), August 4, 2006, Pg. 43.]


* Abdul Rashid Dostum (1954–): Afghani military figure, the current leader of Uzbek-Afghan northern provinces. ["Dostum is an atheist who has switched allegiances numerous times; the forces backed by Tajikistan are mostly Sunni. Khan's are mostly Shi'ite. If the Taliban were to bolt from Kabul, the political vacuum cited by Abdullah would have come to pass - and would suck in as ruler whoever was first and fastest on the scene, followed helter-skelter by the rest." Peter Popham, "The Independent" (London), November 13, 2001, News, Pg. 11.]
* William Sholto Douglas, Baron Douglas of Kirtleside, Marshal of the Royal Air Force GCB, MC, DFC (1893–1969): Distinguished British airman, a senior figure in the Royal Air Force up to and during World War II. ["It's easy to scoff at supernatural tales of seances and Ouija boards, but Compton Miller found that some remarkable people who believe them." "Humble pie from the hereafter" Lady Douglas of Kirtleside: "Aged 62, an ex-Molyneax model and widow of the World War II RAF hero." Sholto Douglas was an atheist who always maintained that death was as final as "treading on a beetle". Soon after he died in 1969 his distraught widow met Dr Mervyn Stockwood, then Bishop of Southwark." Compton Miller, 'Lords and ladies in high spirits', "The Times", October 5, 1984; pg. 15; Issue 61954; col A.]
* Jeremy Hall (1985–): American army specialist who sued the U.S. Department of Defense, alleging his atheism led to discrimination, death threats and being denied promotions. ["Hall, 23, was raised in a Protestant family in North Carolina and dropped out of school. It wasn't until he joined the Army that he began questioning religion, eventually deciding that he couldn't follow any faith. But he feared how that would look to other soldiers. "I was ashamed to say that I was an atheist," Hall said. It eventually came out in Iraq in 2007, when he was in a firefight. Hall was a gunner on a Humvee, which took several bullets in its protective shield. Afterward, his commander asked whether he believed in God, Hall said. "I said, 'No, but I believe in Plexiglas,' " Hall said. "I've never believed I was going to a happy place. You get one life. When I die, I'm worm food." " [ Atheist soldier claims harassment] ,, April 26, 2008 (accessed July 15, 2008).]

ocial Sciences

* Scott Atran (1952–): American anthropologist. [In an "Edge" [ discussion] following the Beyond Belief conference in 2006, Atran criticised other speakers, saying: "I find it fascinating that among the brilliant scientists and philosophers at the conference, there was no convincing evidence presented that they know how to deal with the basic irrationality of human life and society other than to insist against all reason and evidence that things ought to be rational and evidence based. It makes me embarrassed to be a scientist and atheist." ]
* Herbert de Souza (1935–1997): Brazilian sociologist and activist against economic injustice and government corruption in Brazil, and founder of the Brazilian Institute of Social Analysis and Economics (IBASE). ["Two years ago, Betinho developed Aids. He died, weighing just over six stone, of complications of hepatitis C, which he had also caught from contaminated blood. Although he was an atheist, the theologian Leonardo Boff has suggested that the Pope should canonise Betinho during his visit to Brazil in October. He said that "it would be a prophetic act if he were declared the saint of the poor, the patron saint of citizenship"." Sue Branford and Jan Rocha, 'Obituary: Herbert De Souza: Saintly Champion of the Poor', "The Guardian", August 19, 1997, Pg. 15.]
* Émile Durkheim (1858–1917): French sociologist whose contributions were instrumental in the formation of sociology and anthropology. ["Commonly regarded as the most important feature of Durkheim's thought about religion—doubtless because of the apologetic anxieties it stirs—this "reduction" takes the form of claiming that all talk of God can be reduced to talk about society. As a formula, this is to assert that society and God are identical. There is indeed ample warrant for the view that the Durkheimians believed that all talk of God was really about and derived from social experience. The religious experience of "spirit" is explainable in terms of the dynamics of crowd-induced enthusiasms in rituals. As atheists, the Durkheimians did not believe an experience of God or spirit was possible because gods or spirits either did not exist or were beyond the cognitive abilities of humans to experience. Ritual, on the other hand, was religion in tangible form." Strenski, Ivan: "Durkheim, Émile", "Encyclopedia of Religion", ed. Lindsay Jones, Vol. 4 p.2527, 2nd ed. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2005.]
* Norman Finkelstein (1953–): American political scientist and author, specialising in Jewish-related issues, especially the Holocaust and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. ["Finkelstein, who describes himself as a Jewish atheist and Left-wing anti-Zionist who supports the Palestinian cause, has been ostracised by the American Jewish community for his views." Tony Paterson, 'German outrage at Holocaust book', "Sunday Telegraph", February 18, 2001, Pg. 31.]
* Sir Raymond Firth CNZM, FBA (1901–2002): New Zealand ethnologist, considered to have singlehandedly created a form of British economic anthropology. ["His Methodist upbringing soon turned into a thoroughgoing humanistic atheism. This freed him for the sympathetic study of exotic religions, and for discussions of the role of faith in the anthropologist's own perceptions. He tended to feel a sort of good-natured intolerance of the religious beliefs of his friends and colleagues." Obituary: Professor Sir Raymond Firth, "The Times" (London), February 26, 2002.]
* Michel Foucault (1926–1984): French philosopher, historian, critic and sociologist. ["He aimed to write so as to efface his 'face'; that is, to do without personality. This was a well-meant kind of asceticism. Not surprisingly he came out, late on, in admiration of the Desert Fathers, conscious abstainers from pleasure for the sake of a self turned into a painfully well-made artifact. He would, he liked to say, have been a monk, had he not been an atheist. People should be allowed to inhabit a cell, but of their own making." Valentine Cunningham reviewing "The Lives of Michel Foucault" by David Macey and "The Passion of Michel Foucault" by James Miller, "The Observer", June 13, 1993, Pg. 63.]
* Thor Heyerdahl (1914–2002): Norwegian ethnographer and adventurer, famous for his Kon-Tiki expedition. ["He remained, however, an admirer of primitive societies. He was also an atheist." Obituary of Thor Heyerdahl, "Daily Telegraph", April 19, 2002, Pg. 29.]
* Mayer Hillman (1931–): British political scientist, architect and town planner, a Senior Fellow Emeritus at the Policy Studies Institute. ["Oppressively authoritarian, he [Hillman's father] required his children to do his bidding and brooked no dissent. As a consequence, all three came to challenge authority and Mayer counts himself a "militant atheist", though feels very Jewish and is proud of his origins." Anne Karpf interviewing Hillman, 'A Chain Reaction', "The Guardian", November 2, 2002, Weekend Pages, Pg. 32.]
* Baruch Kimmerling (1939–2007): Romanian-born professor of sociology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. ["A devoted atheist, he lamented Jews' and Arabs' failure to "separate religion from nationality"." Lawrence Joffe, 'Obituary: Baruch Kimmerling', "The Guardian", June 26, 2007, Pg. 39.]
* Kemal Kirişci (19??–): Turkish political scientist, professor at the Department of Political Science and International Relations at Boğaziçi University, Istanbul. ["I don't vote for him, but I praise him [...] I'm a leftist atheist, he's a rightwing Islamist. Yet I still say he's the best prime minister for the country." Kemal Kirişci, quoted in Ian Traynor, 'EU membership', "The Guardian", June 12, 2006, Pg. 17.]
* Peter Lawrence (1921–1987): British-born Australian anthropologist, pioneer in the study of Melanesian religions noted for his work on cargo cults. ["Raised Anglican, Lawrence professed to be an atheist, although, as he once wryly remarked, "an atheist with doubts." " MacDonald, Mary N. "Lawrence, Peter." "Encyclopedia of Religion". Ed. Lindsay Jones. Vol. 8. 2nd ed. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2005. 5379-5380. ]
*Sir Edmund Leach (1910–1989): British social anthropologist, a Fellow of the British Academy. ["A declared atheist Leach's upbringing was 'hard-boiled Christian', his mother, to whom he was close as a child, being a devout Anglican (Firth, 10). His rejection of Christianity while an undergraduate was bound up with his growing independence from her, but as he later remarked, 'mud sticks if you throw enough' (ibid.)." James Laidlaw, [ 'Leach, Sir Edmund Ronald (1910–1989)', "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, 2004 (accessed May 1, 2008).]
* James H. Leuba (1868–1946): American psychologist, one of the leading figures of the early phase of the American psychology of religion movement. ["After he began his scientific studies he became an atheist. He remained, throughout the rest of his life, a critic of religion, much in the same vein as Freud, and a critic of religious hypocrites." Beit-Hallahmi, Benjamin: "Leuba, James H." "Encyclopedia of Religion". Ed. Lindsay Jones. Vol. 8. 2nd ed. Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2005, p.5418.]
* Franz Leopold Neumann (1900–1954): German political scientist, known for theoretical analyses of National Socialism, and considered among the founders of modern political science in Germany. ["Like my parents, I have always been an atheist." Franz Leopold's son Michael Neumann, ' [ What is Antisemitism?] ', "Counterpunch", June 4, 2002 (accessed August 6, 2008).]
* Alfred Radcliffe-Brown (1881–1955): English social anthropologist who developed the theory of Structural functionalism. ["An atheist from at least his student years, he became an honorary associate of the Rationalist Press Association in 1952. An Oxford student remembered him as 'somewhat assertive in his arguments against religion' (C. Fuller, 'An interview with M. N. Srinivas', "Anthropology Today", 15/5, 1999, 5), but the nearest he came to showing it in print was the suggestion that religion is a source of 'fears and anxieties from which [men] would otherwise be free—the fear of black magic or of spirits, fear of God, of the Devil, of Hell' (Radcliffe-Brown, Structure, 149). [...] His restraint may have sprung from an austere conception of science or from the functionalist fear that destroying a people's beliefs will undermine their social system." Kenneth Maddock: Brown, Alfred Reginald Radcliffe- (1881–1955)', "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, 2004 [] (accessed April 30, 2008).]
* Herbert Simon (1916–2001): American political scientist and economist, one of the most influential social scientists of the 20th century. ["The "ardent debater" championed unpopular causes, "but from conviction rather than cussedness", in high-school discussions: the single tax, free trade, unilateral disarmament, strengthening the League of Nations. Indeed, his first publication, whilst still in grade school, was a letter to the Editor of the Milwaukee Journal, defending atheism." K Vela Velupillai, 'Obituary: Professor Herbert Simon', "The Independent" (London), February 13, 2001, Pg. 6.]
* Robert Spitzer (19??–): American psychiatrist, Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University, a major architect of the modern classification of mental disorders. ["Dr Spitzer has said repeatedly that as an "atheist Jew" his only interest in the issue is scientific truth, adding that an orthodoxy which forbids acknowledgement of the possibility of change is as flawed as that which labels homosexuality an act of will and morally wrong." Charles Laurence, 'Going straight', Sunday Telegraph, October 12, 2003, Pg. 19.]
* Laurie Taylor (1936–): British sociologist and radio presenter. ["He was educated at St Mary's College, Liverpool until the Christian Brothers who ran it cast him out like Lucifer, for what he judges to be his "general atheism". He started work in a mail-order warehouse. "Then I realised I needed a proper career." " Jonathan Sale interviewing Taylor, "The Independent" (London), March 2, 2006, Features, Pg. 11.]


* Lance Armstrong (1971–): American cyclist, winner of the Tour de France seven consecutive times. [as saying "If there was a god, I'd still have both nuts." Lance Armstrong, quoted by ET Magazine in 2004. (Armstrong lost one testicle due to cancer.)]
* Fausto Coppi (1919–1960): Italian racing cyclist, nicknamed "Il Campionissimo" ("the greatest champion") one of the most successful and popular cyclists of all time. ["Nearly 50 years after his death, Fausto Coppi - nicknamed "The Heron" for his gaunt looks and ungainly bearing, and his ability to soar through the mountains - is still the standard against whom all Italian cyclists are measured, and he remains the country's great Tour de France hero. Twice a winner, and five times victorious in the Giro d'Italia, Coppi, an atheist and free thinker, was also a symbol of modernity for post-war Italy, whose traditionalists came to hate him in equal measure." 'Tour de France: Armstrong's predecessors as five-times winners', "The Independent" (London), July 28, 2003, Sport, Pg. 25.]
* Robin Dixon CBE (1935–): British Olympic gold medal bobsledder, army Major, businessman, British and Northern Irish politician, latterly a member of the House of Lords. ["There has been legislation in Northern Ireland concerning fair employment, which related to those matters, for many years. It was strictly adhered to and policed. In fact, all recruits to my company and most others had to declare at the time, in a totally confidential envelope, whether they were perceived to be Roman Catholics or perceived to be Protestants. I say that because one has to be a Protestant or Roman Catholic Jew or, in my case, a Roman Catholic or Protestant atheist." Lord Glentoran, Lords Hansard, 11 Mar 2004: Column 1372 (accessed April 24, 2008). ]
* Jan Hein Donner (1927–1988): Dutch chess grandmaster and writer. ["It was Donner who told me the real reason that women don't make good chessplayers ("It's because they're basically so stupid," he asserted); it was Donner who told the mayoress of Jerusalem how impressed he was with the wide variety of religions in her city, then, when asked his own religion replied: "Well actually, I'm an atheist - but not a practising one." " William Hartston, "The Independent" (London), August 29, 1996, Back Pages, Pg. 22.]
* Jonathan Edwards (1966–): British triple jumper. Former Olympic, European and World champion. Holds the current world record in the event. ["Having left his sport as a dyed-in-the-wool evangelical, Edwards is now, to all intents and purposes, an atheist." [] ]
* Hugh Falkus (1917–1996): British writer, film maker, World War II pilot, but best known as an angler, with seminal books on salmon and sea trout fishing. ["Hugh Falkus set about refining his techniques for Spey casting with carbon-fibre rods and aerodynamic lines, and, more importantly, sharing his skills on his legendary famous fishing courses. When, in 1995, old age prevented him from continuing, he asked his protege to take up the reins. "Take the school south, that is where all the money is, but keep my name alive," is how Daunt, as he is known by his friends, recalls the offer, adding, "although Hugh was an atheist, he was quite determined to become immortal"." Adrian Dangar, 'A simple matter of perfect casting', "Daily Telegraph", May 25, 2002, Pg. 19.]
* David Feherty (1958–): Irish golfer, a former European Tour and PGA Tour professional who now works as a writer and broadcaster. ["The only thing missing from this tidy story - this is America, remember - is a testimonial from the athlete thanking God for his rescue. That is the way it's done over here. Feherty's not buying it, though. "I am a diehard atheist," he volunteers, joining Einstein, Darwin and, hmm, Annika Sorenstam, but clearly crossing into uncharted waters for an American TV personality." Bruce Selcraig, 'Golf: US Open Countdown', "Daily Telegraph", June 12, 2007, Sports, Pg.12.]
* Dan Fouts: Former American football quarterback for the National Football League's San Diego Chargers and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. []
* Olga Galchenko (1990–): Juggler. [ [ "Thou Shalt not Confuse Religion with Morality" by Olga Galchenko] "Coming from a somewhat religious family, I naturally embraced Christianity and tried hard to keep my faith until about the age of 12, when I decided to finally stop trying, and gradually became an atheist."]
* Joe Simpson (1972–): British mountaineer, author and motivational speaker, famous for his book Touching the Void, subsequently filmed. [Q: "You say you are an atheist - did your experience affect your belief or just confirm it?" Simpson: "Confirmed it very powerfully. I saved my own life: it wasn't some omniscient being." 'The World According To... Joe Simpson, Mountaineer', "The Independent" (London), January 13, 2004, Features, Pg. 3.]
* Robert Smith (1972–): former Minnesota Vikings running back and NFL Network football analyst. ["Former Minnesota Vikings running back Robert Smith, an atheist, says he has no objection to making religious counseling and services available to interested players." [ Going long for Jesus] , by Tom Krattenmaker at (Accessed August 29, 2006).]
* Matthew Syed (1970–): English table tennis international, three times the Men's Singles Champion at the Commonwealth Table Tennis Championships and competing for Great Britain in two Olympic Games, now a "Times" journalist. ["Those of a religious persuasion will doubtless be screaming at their newspapers by now, proclaiming that the true route towards happiness (and away from damaging, as opposed to useful, negative emotions) is not to be found in the writings of Darwin, Oliver James, Easterlin or any other mortal. And they may be on to something. Even atheists such as myself read the New Testament with a sense of amazement at the wisdom embedded in the teachings of Christ. "It is better to give than to receive," he said, something that must have sounded like a wind-up to his long-suffering disciples." Matthew Syed, 'Is that all there is?', "The Times" (London), May 21, 2008, Times2, Pg. 4.]
* Savielly Tartakower (1887–1956): Polish and French chess Grandmaster, the king of chess journalism in the 1920s and 30s. ["Practically all chess-players are born optimists [...] Those who believe in God count on divine help; the agnostics know that somehow or other it will turn out all right; whilst the atheists, who are of course the most superstitious, believe in luck. If this last statement seems a trifle high pitched then let me submit as evidence the case of Dr. Tartakower. An atheist if ever there was one, he fervently believed in luck, touched wood at appropriate moments and never, never walked under ladders." Harry Golombek, 'Chess: The eternal spring of hope', "The Times", July 24, 1971; pg. 7; Issue 58233; col E.]
*Diana Taurasi (1982-): Current WNBA player for the Phoenix Mercury []
* Bob Woolmer (1948–2007): English international cricketer, professional cricket coach and commentator, playing in 19 Test matches and 6 One Day Internationals for England and later coaching South Africa, Warwickshire and Pakistan. ["Woolmer's relationship with his team was under increasing strain from religious disputes. The coach was frequently questioned by his captain, Inzamam, over his atheism. They had many anguished discussions about belief." Mark Townsend, 'Bob Woolmer', "The Observer" (England), July 1, 2007, Observer Sports Magazine, Pg. 27.]

Visual arts

* Abu Abraham (1924–2002): Indian political cartoonist, journalist, and author. ["His strongest theme, as India sank faster into factional and religious politics, had remained adherence to the original vision of Mahatma Gandhi and Nehru for a wholly secular state: Abu was a rationalist and atheist." Michael McNay, 'Obituary: Abu Abraham', "The Guardian", December 7, 2002, Pg. 26.]
* Franko B (1960–): British performance artist who uses his own body in his art. ["But while the power of Franko B's medium is unquestionable, the multi-dimensional interpretations open to onlookers mean that he is prey to negative readings. He protests: "Blood is one of the fluids inside me that gives me life, and in a way when I'm performing I feel I'm giving life. I grew up Catholic, and while I am an atheist, religion is a major influence on my work - I love churches, I love paintings of the Crucifixion. Whatever I do, I believe in it 100 per cent." " Rachel Halliburton, 'It's a Bleeding Liberty', "The Independent" (London), April 26, 2000, Features: Arts, Pg. 11.]
* Francis Bacon (1909–1992): Irish-born figurative painter whose work is known for its bold, austere, and often grotesque or nightmarish imagery. ["And a painter works with his human material, not with colours and paintbrushes. It's his thoughts that enter the painting. But I don't expect any certainty in life, I don't believe in anything, not in God, not in morality, not in social success ... I just believe in the present moment if it has genius - in the spinning roulette ball or in the emotions that I experience when what I transmit on to the canvas works. I am completely amoral and atheist, and if I hadn't painted, I would have been a thief or a criminal. My paintings are a lot less violent than me. Perhaps if my childhood had been happier, I would have painted bouquets of flowers." Francis Bacon, interviewed by Francis Giacobetti, published in "The Independent", June 14, 2003, Features, Pg. 8-14.]
* Jemima Blackburn (1957–): Scottish painter and illustrator, especially of evocative images of rural life in 19th century Scotland. ["Around their dinner table could be found all shades of political and religious affiliation. Hugh was a devout Christian and apolitical, while Jemima's atheism was coupled with a stout defence of Disraeli's brand of toryism." A. J. Crilly, [ 'Blackburn, Hugh (1823–1909)'] , "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, 2004 (accessed May 2, 2008).]
* Iwona Blazwick OBE (19??–): British art gallery curator, Director of the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London. ["The hidden jewel of the year was an impromptu performance by 40 singers from a South African township under the dome of St Paul's Cathedral, which made me - a devout atheist - feel spiritually moved." Iwona Blazwick, 'The Best of 2002', "Daily Telegraph, December 21, 2002, Section, Pg. 01.]
* Berkeley Breathed (1957–): American cartoonist, children's book author/illustrator, director, and screenwriter, best known for the cartoon strip "Bloom County". ["...I'm an atheist..." [ Berkeley Breathed Pokes Fun] , interview with Breathed by William Whitney, "Psychology Today Magazine", Jan/Feb 2004 (Accessed April 24, 2008)]
* Joan Brossa (1919–1998): Spanish graphic designer and plastic artist, one of the leading early proponents of visual poetry in Catalan literature. ["Brossa was born in Barcelona, and resisted his family's ambitions for him to become a banker. He was tenacious, his sense of purpose often taken for arrogance. He became a Marxist, and an atheist who believed that if a good God existed, he should be tried at Nuremberg." Adrian Searle, 'The conjuror of Catalonia: Obituary: Joan Brossa', "The Guardian", January 12, 1999, Pg. 16.]
* Mitch Clem (1982–): American cartoonist and webcomic author. ["The thing is that, as an sic|athiest, I don't BELIEVE in Satan."—cite web | last = Clem | first = Mitch | authorlink = Mitch Clem | title = Tour V | work = San Antonio Rock City | date = February 13, 2006 | url = | accessdate = 2006-01-03]
* Walter Crane (1845–1915): English artist and book illustrator, a main contributor to the child's nursery motif in English children's illustrated literature of the latter 19th century. ["As a painter and atheist, Crane developed a ponderous form of symbolism, specialising in neo-pagan personifications of 'the spirits of nature'." Andrew Graham-Dixon reviewing a Crane exhibition, 'The philosophy of wallpaper', "The Independent", February 14, 1989.]
* Eric de Maré (1910–2002): British architectural photographer. ["De Maré was unhappy at his preparatory boarding school, and became an atheist and opponent of puritanism in reaction against its ethos. [...] In "A Matter of Life or Debt" (1984), de Maré foresaw how the digital age offered even greater potential for his dream of the future, which was prevented from happening by "the Judaeo-Christian tradition of rewards and punishments in general and the Puritan ethic in particular"." Obituary of Eric de Maré, "Daily Telegraph", February 6, 2002, Pg. 27.]
* Barry Driscoll (1926–2006): British painter, wildlife artist and sculptor. ["The painter and sculptor Barry Driscoll, who has died of cancer aged 79, was one of Britain's finest wild life artists and he was also a humanist, humourist, atheist, anarchist, hedonist, raconteur and bon viveur." Adrian Bailey, 'Obituaries: Barry Driscoll', "The Guardian", May 15, 2006, Pg. 36.]
* John Ernest (1922–1994): American-born artist, a key member of the British constructivist art movement. ["A "practising" atheist, he was a person of great wit, warmth, generosity and hope." Terry Pope, 'Obituary: John Ernest', "The Guardian" (London), August 18, 1994, Features, Pg. T11.]
* Ernst Ludwig Freud (1892–1970): German/Austrian architect, the youngest son of Sigmund Freud. [" [Ernst Ludwig's son Clement] Freud says he has omitted everything but the most 'uncontroversial happenings' from the text, and this is mostly true. But there are a few moments when indignation or irritation surge to the surface. In conversation, he is prepared to go further. In the book, for instance, he fudges his parents' non-appearance at his 1950 church wedding to actress Jill Raymond (who now runs two theatre companies in Suffolk). My interpretation had been that they had not been invited. But he corrects me on this. They were asked but chose, as atheists, not to attend." Harriet Lane, 'Interview: The Freud who hates therapy: Sir Clement Freud', "The Observer", October 14, 2001, Review Pages, Pg. 3.]
* Sam Fullbrook (1922–2004): Prize-winning Australian artist. ["His aim as a painter, he said bluntly, was to rubbish Australian-born Europhiles, and paint good pictures that children would love. He hoped to combine in his work "tenderness, sweetness, charm, clarity, succinctness, love, passion and religion" - this from a declared atheist who would go to church "because I get a lot out of it"." Obituary of Sam Fullbrook, "Daily Telegraph", February 13, 2004, Pg. 29.]
* Peter Fuller (1947–1990): British art critic and magazine editor, founding editor of the art magazine Modern Painters and art critic of "The Sunday Telegraph". ["For myself, I remain an incorrigible atheist; that is my proclamation of faith. Yet there is something about the experience of art, itself, which compels me to re-introduce the category of the 'spiritual.' More than that, I believe that, given the ever-present absence of God, art, and the gamut of aesthetic experience, provides the sole remaining glimmer of transcendence. The best we can hope for is that aesthetic surrogate for salvation: redemption through form." Peter Fuller, "The Guardian" (London), June 28, 1990.
"Review: Touched by the fear and ice of God - Peter Fuller argues that, to an atheist, art is the sole provider of spiritual quality, and that a materialistic approach to art is an impediment to perception. This is the last essay written by Fuller, art critic and editor of Modern Painting, before his death two months ago at the age of 43." ("ibid.")
* Sir Alfred Gilbert (1854–1934): English sculptor and goldsmith, central participant in the New Sculpture movement. ["Although an atheist who disliked all organized religion, his memorial service was held on November 13 in St Paul's Cathedral, where a memorial tablet to him was erected in the crypt." Richard Dorment: 'Gilbert, Sir Alfred (1854–1934)', "Oxford Dictionary of National Biography", Oxford University Press, 2004 [] (accessed May 1, 2008).]
* Sir Ernst Gombrich OM, CBE (1909–2001): Austrian-born British art historian. [" Although "an imperfect guide to world history ... its central message is still valid," concluded Raymond Carr in the Spectator. Gombrich "was an atheist with a strong streak of anticlericalism where the great monotheistic religions, Islam, Judaism and Christianity, were concerned ... To his dying day Voltaire was his hero. When today bashing the Enlightenment is a popular sport, his humanism is a lesson for us all." " 'Critical eye: One for the history books', "The Guardian", October 1, 2005, Review Pages, Pg. 2.]
* Antony Gormley OBE, RA (1950–): English sculptor, famous for his "Angel of the North". ["Gormley, a lapsed Catholic scholar of Benedictine monks who nearly became a Buddhist monk himself, is now an atheist. That said, he has an artistic spiritualism that retains a thoroughly material basis to it." Aidan Campbell, ' [ Antony Gormley in conversation with Will Self] ', August 1, 2007 (accessed June 10, 2008).]
* George Grosz (1893–1959): German draughtsman and painter, a prominent member of the Berlin Dada and New Objectivity group. ["As a Communist, atheist, and satirist Grosz was a natural target for the National Socialists but left for America in 1932."David Rodgers: "Grosz, George", "Grove Art Online", Oxford University Press, (accessed April 28, 2008) [] .]
* Alfred Hrdlicka (1928–): Austrian sculptor, draughtsman, painter and artist, whose 2008 religious work about the Apostles, "Religion, Flesh and Power", attracted criticism over its homoerotic theme. ["Hrdlicka says overall he is pleased with the display and has praised the director for being "strong". A communist and atheist, Hrdlicka once said the Bible was the most thrilling book he had ever read and that religious imagery forms a central core to his work." [ Erotic Jesus sparks art debate in Austria] , ABC News (Australia), April 8, 2008 (accessed April 15, 2005).]
* Mark Hofmann (1954–): Prolific counterfeiter and ex-Mormon who murdered two people in Salt Lake City, Utah. ["He admitted later that he actually was trying to change church [Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints] history, because he said that he had become an atheist when he was a teenager." "The Anthon Forgeries", from the documentary series "Masterminds." Originally aired in 2004 (Season 1, Episode 1).] ["Hofmann, an atheist who kept up all appearances of being a good member of the LDS Church, was known for his historical "discoveries," many of which were intended to cast doubt on the official history of the church." [,1249,465033636,00.html Notorious incidents over the years] , Jerry D. Spangler and Bob Bernick Jr., "Deseret Morning News", March 15, 2003 (Accessed December 17, 2007).]
* Sebastian Horsley (1962–): English artist and writer, best known for having undergone a voluntary crucifixion. ["Horsley said later: "I have been punished by a god I don't believe in and he has thrown me off the cross for impersonating his son, for being an atheist, and for being a disaster. I have made a complete fool of myself. I am going to be a laughing stock. The film will end up on Jeremy Beadle." " Fiachra Gibbons, 'Cross to bear: Crucified artist up for Alternative Turner', "The Guardian", November 30, 2002, Pg. 11.]
* Waldemar Januszczak (1954–): British art critic, former "Guardian" arts editor and maker of television arts documentaries. ["I think it would be fair to say that religion was forced upon us. There were various compulsory masses and benedictions and at certain times of the year these grew into epidemics of incense burning and Latin wailing. For a precocious atheist like myself these nightly benedictions were a real trial. I would sit there staring at the copy of Leonardo da Vinci's Virgin and St. Anne that hung in the chapel, looking for the hidden vulture that Leonardo was supposed to have secretly included in the painting." Waldemar Januszczak, 'Forever Poland-on-Thames: A look back at schooldays in Henley', "The Guardian" (London), August 2, 1988.]
* Charles-Édouard Jeanneret-Gris, known as Le Corbusier (1887–1965): Swiss-born architect, designer, urbanist, writer and also painter, famous for his contributions to what now is called Modern Architecture. ["In Sunday Feature: Swimming Toward the Sun (Radio 3, 5.45pm), Jonathan Glancey asks why the great architect Le Corbusier, a modernist and atheist from a Protestant background, should choose to claim that his ancestry lay among the Cathars, a persecuted thirteenth-century sect of Catholic heretics." Stephanie Billen, 'OTV: Radio: Sunday September 29', "The Observer", September 29, 2002, Pg. 42.]
* Giulio Mancini (1558–1630): Italian biographer and writer on art, art collector and noted physician. ["An ebullient personality, he was an atheist and adulterer, and made clever use of his official position to further his activities as art dealer." Langdon, Helen: "Mancini, Giulio", "Grove Art Online", Oxford University Press, [accessed April 28, 2008] , [] . ]
* Alexander McQueen CBE (1969–): English fashion designer. ["As an apprentice tailor in Savile Row, McQueen enthusiastically made suits for the Prince of Wales and he has since designed several outfits for the Duchess of York. He says, however, "I am an anarchist, full-stop. I have always had the same political ideology. I'm an atheist. I am anti-monarchist. I don't believe in hierarchies." " Tim Walker, 'Fashion victim', "Sunday Telegraph", December 21, 2003, Pg. 26.]
* Oscar Niemeyer (1907–): Brazilian architect, considered one of the most important names in international modern architecture. ["Niemeyer turns up the volume on architecture to make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck. In 1987, when I first visited Brasilia and walked into the cathedral, it was a revelation. Stepping from the sunlight into the dimly lit nave and out again into the glorious light-filled, blue-glazed cathedral, alive with doves and angels, was exhilarating, an electrifying play upon light and shade. "Earth meets space. The nave opens up to infinity," Niemeyer explains. So what if he is an atheist?" Nonie Niesewand interviewing Niemeyer, 'Architecture: The city that Oscar built', "The Independent" (London), October 3, 1998, Pg. 24-25.]
* Jorge Oteiza (1908–2003): Basque sculptor, painter, designer and writer, renowned for being one of the main theorists on Basque modern art. ["A profound spirituality informs most of Oteiza's work. He could articulate a humanistic form of Christianity or, with equal lucidity, proclaim himself "a devout atheist"." Michael Mullan, 'Obituary: Jorge Oteiza', "The Independent" (London), April 10, 2003, Pg. 15.]
* Simon Patterson (1967–): English artist, shortlisted for the Turner Prize in 1996. ["Other artists have been far from equivocal in their more jaundiced views of the liturgy and Christian myth. [...] Simon Patterson also submitted a sunburst, but with probably a quite different subtext. [...] In the work, sunlight filters through trees to encounter the purple smoke from a firework grenade billowing up from the ground. "I thought it was redolent of the kind of Hollywood perception of God on a Cecil B DeMille set," says the London-based Patterson, who is an atheist. "It seemed to me that all that was missing was the Voice of God from the film The Ten Commandments." " Simon Tait, 'Oh My God!', "The Independent" (London), November 12, 2004, Features, Pg. 2-4.]
* Grayson Perry (1960–): English artist, best known for his ceramics and for cross-dressing, the first ceramic artist and public transvestite to win the Turner Prize. ["Perry rages at the dead, he even has contempt for them. He has hung a collection of Victorian samplers - religious texts and domestic images embroidered by middle-class women - among which is his own, atheist, sampler. Anger is generous, and in raging against these dead peoples' beliefs he treats them as if they mattered." Jonathan Jones, 'Perry's rural magic casts the right spell', "The Guardian", July 10, 2006, Review Pages, Pg. 32.]
* Sigmar Polke (1941–): German post-modern painter and photographer. ["Neither artist is a believer. [...] The erudite Polke is deeply versed in religious traditions. He said, "It's not necessary to believe. Christianity for two thousand years has influenced the arts, architecture, philosophy, society." " Peter Schjeldahl, 'Many-colored Glass: Gerhard Richter and Sigmar Polke do windows', "The New Yorker" Vol. 84 No. 13, Pg. 124, May 12, 2008.]
* Gwen Raverat (1885–1957): English wood engraving artist who co-founded the Society of Wood Engravers in England. ["In spite of Gwen's lifelong atheism, during her funeral "there was something appropriate about the choice of Psalm 23 ('He shall feed me in green pastures: and lead me forth beside the waters of comfort')". Yet isn't this the most boringly appropriate bit of music for a funeral there is?" Frank Whitford reviewing "Gwen Raverat: Friends, Family & Affections" by Frances Spalding, "Sunday Times" (London), July 1, 2001.]
* Gerhard Richter (1932–): German artist, considered one of the most important German artists of the post-World War II period. ["Neither artist is a believer. A German critic, Hubertus Butin, has termed Richter "a professed atheist with a strong leaning toward Catholicism"-a characterization that the artist condoned with a sly smile, when I saw him in Cologne." Peter Schjeldahl, 'Many-colored Glass: Gerhard Richter and Sigmar Polke do windows', "The New Yorker" Vol. 84 No. 13, Pg. 124, May 12, 2008.]
* Bryan Robertson OBE (1925–2002): English curator and arts manager, "the greatest Director the Tate Gallery never had". ["We read mythology and had periods for religious knowledge with separate classes for Jews and Catholics as there would be now for Muslims. Myths, after all, are the vaudeville of religion; how can you become a convincing atheist without prior knowledge of what you're rejecting?" Bryan Robertson, in a reprint of a 1995 article following his death, "The Guardian", November 23, 2002, Pg. 19.]
* Martin Rowson (1959–): British political cartoonist, novelist and satirist. [ Rowson refers to himself as an atheist throughout his 2008 book "The Dog Allusion: Gods, Pets and How to be Human" (Vintage Books, London, ISBN 9780099521334). (The title is a play on that of Richard Dawkins's "The God Delusion".)]
* Maurice Sinet, known as Siné (1928–): French radical left-wing cartoonist. ["The editor of the weekly, Philippe Val, 55, asked Siné to retract. The cartoonist — who was an anticolonial critic of the Algerian war, supports a Palestinian state, is a fierce atheist and spends a good part of the day on a respirator — said he would rather castrate himself." Steven Erlanger, ' [ A Scooter, a Sarkozy and Rancor Collide] ', "New York Times", August 5, 2008 (accessed August 5, 2008).]
* Brendan Powell Smith (19??–): American artist, author, and creator of The Brick Testament, which illustrates stories from the Bible by dioramas of LEGO bricks. ["I've been fascinated with religion ever since I became an atheist at about the age of 13. Prior to that I had been a regular churchgoer and my mother was even a Sunday School teacher at our local Episcopal church. But as my childhood was approaching its end, I had this idea (I'm not sure from where) that it would be a good idea to "prepare for adulthood" by consciously trying rid myself of what seemed like childish ways of thinking. I recognized superstitions for what they were, and tried to turn away from "magical thinking". I didn't intend for any of this to affect my religious beliefs, but in the end it did in a profound way, and soon enough I found myself the only atheist I knew amongst my family, friends, and community." Brendan Powell Smith, ' [ Interview: The Brick Testament's Reverend Brendan Powell Smith!] ', Nontheist Nexus Zine, May 22, 2008 (accessed June 9, 2008).]
* "Normal" Bob Smith (1969–): American graphic artist, who prompted controversy with his creation of Jesus Dress Up. [ Smith's explanation of his atheism to a hate mailer on his website [] ]
* Kurt Westergaard (1935–): Danish cartoonist, creator of a controversial cartoon of the Muslim prophet Muhammad wearing a bomb as a turban which was part of the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy. [Interviewed by the "New York Times" on March 20, 2008, Westergaard said: "I have always been an atheist, and I dare say these events have only intensified my atheism." [ Outrage at Cartoons Still Tests the Danes] (accessed April 10, 2008).]


* Christopher Robin Milne (1920–1996): Son of author A. A. Milne who, as a young child, was the basis of the character Christopher Robin in his father's Winnie-the-Pooh stories and in two books of poems. ["The books live on. But in real life Toad is dead; Alice is dead; Peter Pan and Wendy are long flown; and now Christopher Robin, a 'sweet and decent' man who overcame a childhood in which he was haunted by Pooh and taunted by peers, has left without saying his prayers - he was a dedicated atheist - aged 75." Euan Ferguson, Robin's gone, but swallows linger on', "The Observer", April 28, 1996, News, Pg. 14.]

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