Theodore Monod

po_Monod-TheodoreTheodore Andre Monod (April 9, 1902 – November 22, 2000) was a French naturalist, explorer, and humanist scholar.

Early in his career, Monod was made professor at the Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle and founded the Institut Français d’Afrique Noire in Senegal. He became a member of the Académie des sciences d’outre-mer in 1949, member of the Académie de Marine in 1957, and member of the Académie des Sciences in 1963. In 1960 he was one of the founders of the World Academy of Art and Science.

He began his career in Africa with the study of monk seals on Mauritania’s Cap Blanc peninsula. However, he soon turned his attention to the Sahara desert, which he would survey for more than sixty years in search of meteorites. Though he failed to find the meteorite he sought, he discovered numerous plant species as well as several important Neolithic sites. Perhaps his most important find (together with Wladimir Besnard) was the Asselar man, a 6,000-year-old skeleton of the Adrar des Ifoghas that many scholars believe to be the first remains of a distinctly black person.

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