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Stephen Hawking Quotes In Spotlight As Famous Physicist Celebrates 71st Birthday (PHOTOS)

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Acclaimed physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking turns 71 on Tuesday -- and in addition to his contributions to science, he's known for making some pretty provocative statements | Getty Images

Happy birthday, Stephen Hawking. The world's most famous physicist turns 71 on Tuesday, and fans everywhere are using the occasion to reflect on his contributions not only to science but also to popular culture.

Hawking, who was born in Oxford, England on January 8, 1942 , has been featured on "The Simpsons," "Star Trek," and "The Big Bang Theory" (in which he opposed Sheldon Cooper in an intense game of Words With Friends).

In addition, he's been outspoken on topics ranging from alien life to religion. Check out the slideshow below for 11 of Professor Hawking's most memorable quotations.

Stephen Hawkings Most Provocative Quotes
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