Stephen Jay Gould Photo

Stephen Jay Gould

Born: Sep 10, 1941

Death: May 20, 2002

Birthplace: Bayside

Profession: Writer

Nationality: United States

Stephen Jay Gould

Date of Birth : Sep 10, 1941
Date of Death : May 20, 2002
Birth Place : Bayside

Stephen Jay Gould was an American paleontologist, evolutionary biologist and historian of science. He was also one of the most influential and widely read writers of popular science of his generation. Gould spent most of his career teaching at Harvard University and working at the American Museum of Natural History in New York. In the later years of his life, Gould also taught biology and evolution at New York University. Gould's most significant contribution to evolutionary biology was the theory of punctuated equilibrium, which he developed with Niles Eldredge in 1972. The theory proposes that most evolution is marked by long periods of evolutionary stability, which is punctuated by rare instances of branching evolution. The theory was contrasted against phyletic gradualism, the popular idea that evolutionary change is marked by a pattern of smooth and continuous change in the fossil record. Most of Gould's empirical research was based on the land snail genera Poecilozonites and Cerion. He also contributed to evolutionary developmental biology, and has received wide praise for his book Ontogeny and Phylogeny.


  • Writer
  • Professor
  • Author
  • Scientist
  • Historian
  • Biologist
  • Palaeontologist

Also known as

  • Prof. Stephen Jay Gould


  • Eleanor Gould
  • Leonard Gould


  • Deborah Lee
  • Rhonda Roland Shearer


  • Jesse Gould
  • Ethan Gould

Awards Won

  • MacArthur Fellowship
  • Royal Society Prizes for Science Books
  • National Book Critics Circle Award for General Nonfiction
  • Darwin–Wallace Medal
  • St. Louis Literary Award
  • Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science
  • Distinguished Service Medal
  • Britannica Award & Gold Medal
  • John and Samuel Bard Award in Medicine and Science
  • Humanist Laureate
  • Founders'' Council Award of Merit
  • Neil Miner Award for Excellence in Teaching
  • Iglesias Prize
  • National Magazine Award in Essays and Criticism
  • Commonwealth Award in Interpretive Science
  • James T. Shea Award
  • Gold Medal for Service to Zoology
  • Mary C. Rabbitt History of Geology Award
  • Anthropology in Media Award
  • Westinghouse Science Film Award
  • In Praise of Reason Award
  • Bradford Washburn Award
  • Forkosch Award
  • Golden Trilobite Award for Excellence in Paleontological Writing
  • Outstanding Book Award
  • H.D.Vursell Award
  • Distinguished Service Award
  • Glenn T. Seaborg Award
  • J. Priestley Award and Medal
  • F.V. Haydn Medal
  • Homer Smith Medal
  • T.N. George Medal
  • Edinburgh Medal
  • Charles Schuchert Award
  • Creative Arts Award
  • Silver Medal
  • Medal of Excellence
  • The John P. McGovern Award
  • National Book Award for Science (Hardcover)
  • Meritorious Service Award
  • Paleontological Society Medal
  • Scientist of the Year
  • Sue Tyler Friedman Medal
  • Distinguished Scientist Award
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