The Four Horsemen of the Anti-Apocalypse are coming…

via Atheist Foundation of Australia
May 15, 2011

The Atheist Foundation of Australia is excited to announce that the next Global Atheist Convention ‘A Celebration of Reason’ will feature headline speakers Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens (health permitting).

The Global Atheist Convention will be held once again at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from 13 – 15 April 2012.

“This is the first time that the Four Horsemen have spoken together publicly,” said Atheist Foundation President David Nicholls. “Their best-selling books on atheism earned the group the moniker ‘The Four Horseman of the Anti-Apocalypse’, and fittingly so as they have been instrumental in bringing forth a new enlightenment in the face of growing irrationality, fundamentalism and superstitious thinking around the world.”

The 2010 Global Atheist Convention gave local, interstate and international attendees the opportunity to hear first-rate speakers from a range of fields including science, philosophy, politics, education, stand-up comedy and more.

“Atheism has provided the perfect foundation in which people can come together to celebrate science, reason and secular values in today’s society. With the planet in a state of organised chaos and the menace of religious extremism threatening everyone’s quality of life, this 2012 world-class event will once again provide rational discussion and debate about what can be done to address the issues facing the globe,” said Nicholls.

“The 2012 Global Atheist Convention – ‘A Celebration of Reason’ will also send an important message to Australia’s political institutions that freethinking Australians are a growing force to be reckoned with.”

The entire line-up for the convention will be released gradually via official social media streams in the lead-up to tickets going on sale later in the year. The last convention sold out well in advance, leaving many people disappointed to have missed out. The Atheist Foundation of Australia expects this event will also sell out very quickly and encourages prospective attendees to purchase their tickets as soon as they go on sale.

The Atheist Foundation has succeeded in obtaining financial support from the Victorian Government for the convention.

Every time you say in public “I’m an atheist (of course),” you contribute to the general recognition that we atheists are a large and growing portion of the informed citizenry, and hasten the day when we all shed this vestige of our species’ childhood and become responsible adults. You don’t have to make a big deal of it, or argue with anybody—you can leave that to us! Just let it be known that as a matter of fact, religious belief and practice is not a part of your life. Then we can all get on to more important projects and problems. – Dan Dennett

Media Contact

David Nicholls
Atheist Foundation of Australia Inc
Maitland SA 5573

Ph: +618 8835 2269

33 Responses to The Four Horsemen of the Anti-Apocalypse are coming…

  1. Sharon says:

    I prefer to say “I’m a non believer.” “Atheist” means to many that there’s a god but an atheist doesn’t believe in him/her. I prefer to have no connection whatsoever to a word that was created by believers to negatively classify non believers. Therefore, I’m a non believer. Or another way I phrase it when asked is to say “I don’t have a supernatural belief system.” My favorite, however, is “I believe in me.” And I do. I’ve taken care of myself without wishing and hoping and praying. I just do the work and use my head. What a concept.

    • Sara says:

      I don’t agree, atheism means to be without theism.
      ‘Non-believer’ to me indicates that there is something to believe in but you chose to believe something else instead. It relies on referring to the ‘belief’ that it doest subscribe to – where as atheism is a state of having no reference to a theistic view whatsoever.

  2. Derek Trygstad says:

    How exciting! I wish I could be in Australia for this. Will the convention be recorded so those of us who can’t attent may view it online?

    • Michael Kingsford Gray says:

      Most of the very successful Global Atheist Convention in 2010 is available on DVD.
      I expect that this event will be no different, perhaps enhanced in it’s coverage.

  3. Geurt Geurtsen says:

    I’ve been an atheist for as long as I can remember. I wish I could attend the convention but, being Dutch, Australia is not exactly around the corner for me. And so I wish you well and hope you’ll put some of it online.

    • Geurt, it’s a perfect opportunity for you to come and visit our lovely country. You might even find you like it so much you decide to stay here, like my Dutch husband did. :)

      • Effe says:

        I endorse Margaret’s invitation! An opportunity of a lifetime to come down to our part of the world ( i am a Kiwi) . Make a trip of it. The four horsemen together may be a one off – very special!

  4. Luke says:

    Hopefully the Hitch will still be around for this or at least be in good health!

  5. Fabulous line-up, organisers! Well done. I couldn’t make it to the last convention due to other commitments, but this time I’ll be there with bells on! (And with some very-worn, much read copies of books by these speakers, hoping to get their signatures!)

  6. Detlef Pelz says:

    Please let us know when we may pre-order tickets. This is a not-to-be-missed event!

  7. Chris Mirana says:

    Atheism sets the record straight: since beginningless time, there has never been a supernatural power, GOD, as described in the holy books of the 3 major religions.

    Science proves it.

    This frees humanity from a tyrannical belief, in order to concentrate our energies on facing life as we know it now.

    This is the greatest opportunity for our salvation, freeing ourselves from religious dogmas and suffering.

  8. Brannon says:

    Someone will indubitably film this and post it to YouTube – and for that, we thank you in advance!!!

  9. Katryn Wiese says:

    Do I get to be disappointed that there are no horsewomen of the anti-apocalypse? Wish I could be there, but will be busily teaching science to my students.

    • Jason says:

      I believe there are a few “unofficial” horsewomen of the anti-apocalypse! Certainly many women considered notable “new atheists”.

      Keep in mind many more speakers are scheduled to be announced soon.

    • Tim Mackay says:

      Dear Katryn, I don’t doubt that there are four horsewomen of the anti-Apocalypse out there, and it would be wonderful if they were acclaimed and en-horsed at the Melbourne event. It’s up to them to stake their claim first though.

    • Check out the advisory board on
      There are many non-theist women represented on this site :-) including the Annaka Harris.

  10. Albert Finney says:

    Pretty awful to promote this using Hitch. His chance of attending is extremely low but as he has now lost his voice as well there would appear no chance of him being able to speak even if he made it that far.
    The advertising on this site appears disingenuous at best, totally misleading and tasteless would be more realistic.

    • admin says:

      The 2012 GAC committee have been working closely with Chistopher Hitchens agent for a number of months now. Whilst there can be no certainties in life, both Christopher and his agent are aware of the time frame and are determined to make it to the convention if at all possible. Christopher is a man of principle and integrity and if there was absolutely no chance of him appearing at next years GAC then I am sure he would have indicated so. Christopher is still undergoing treatment and we all hope this is successful and he can keep on working for many more years to come.

  11. Parth says:

    This sounds very exciting. I am curious as to what the pricing is like for students? We aren’t exactly made of money obviously and I would really like the opportunity to attend.

    I did try searching around to see what the ticket prices were last year but I have been unable to find any details.

    Is there anyone perhaps who can help with what the ticket prices were last year? This, I hope, would serve as a good indication for next year.

    I wonder also, do I have to be a student at the time of attending the conference or at the time of buying the ticket? Because there is a change that I will graduate at the end of this year.

    Many thanks in advance for any responses.

  12. Marco Harder says:

    I’m definitely saving up for this!

  13. I’m flying down from Brisbane, and taking time off work to specifically to see this convention. Would love to know a bit more. Any chance you could at least send through the ticket cost, and when tickets are planned to go on sale?

  14. Stuart MacLeod says:

    It is difficult to imagine just who else the organising committee could have secured to up the event’s already high “not to be missed” status … possibly the presence of David Attenborough …

    I have every intention of securing some tickets (might convince the wife to attend by then) as soon as they go on sale … in this instance cost will be a secondary consideration.

    I sincerely hope Christopher Hitchens is well enough at the time to attend.

    • ImperfectPeta says:

      I was reading the articles and comments on them wondering how else the GAC could make this any better for me, a newly outspoken Athiest, and you have hit the nail on the head!! David Attenbrough would be a very excellent and important addition to the event!

  15. Graham Billing says:

    I’ll be there, this is what we need. A place where we can learn more and build networks of friends and colleagues. No we don’t need a church… but we do need a sense of community.

  16. sharon carleton says:

    Wondering if you have invited Tim Minchin to the 2012 convention? He’d be a
    marvellous addition.

    Look forward to having all my prejudices confirmed.


  17. Jack Spencer says:

    Why not invite Victor Zammit and David Thompson – that should spice things up a bit!

  18. Serena says:

    Are you serious? Atheism now has copyright on reason…that’s the biggest load of religious bigotry I have heard…By making a claim to rationalism you are being extremist…we need to progress beyond labels to a common and shared belief that good action speaks the loudest irrespective of motivation…I have seen religious people do good action and I have seen atheists do good actions…at the end of the day it’s their good action that speaks reason not their beliefs…

    • Davo says:

      Are you serious? Atheism now has copyright on reason…that’s the biggest load of religious bigotry I have heard

      Where are atheists claiming copyright on reason? Reason : Think, understand, and form judgments by a process of logic.

      We are celebrating that.

      By making a claim to rationalism you are being extremist

      Really? how? What claim to rationalism are you talking about? What exactly is extremist about looking to reason as one way of acquiring knowledge?

      we need to progress beyond labels to a common and shared belief that good action speaks the loudest irrespective of motivation

      The problem is in the definition of good. Some beliefs think female circumcision is a good thing.

      I have seen religious people do good action and I have seen atheists do good actions…at the end of the day it’s their good action that speaks reason not their beliefs…

      Indeed, however belief can have good people do evil things. Decisions should be based on their merits. Inquiry and doubt are essential checks against deception, self deception, and error. logic and proper empirical method is the only way the whole world can arrive at an agreement on the truth about anything.

  19. lol @ Serena “Atheism now has copyright on reason…that’s the biggest load of religious bigotry I have heard…By making a claim to rationalism you are being extremist”

    No, Serena. Religion making a claim on morality is extremist.

    We don’t have to stop at merely claiming rationality, we can demonstrate it. Sorry if that upsets you. Well, actually, no I’m not.

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