BertrandRussell , born in Trelleck, Wales, was the grandson of the first Earl Russell, who introduced the Reform Bill of 1832 and served as prime minister under Queen Victoria. He studied mathematics and philosophy at Trinity College, Cambridge, 1890–1894, was a Fellow of Trinity College, 1895–1901, a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1908, and was a lecturer in philosophy, 1910–1916. Among his publications in philosophy in this period were An Essay on the Foundations of Geometry (...) , A Critical Exposition of the Philosophy of Leibniz , The Principles of Mathematics , Principia Mathematica , The Problems of Philosophy and Our Knowledge of the External World. (shrink)
The eminent British philosopher BertrandArthurWilliamRussell (born 18 May 1872, died 2 February 1970) studied philosophy and mathematics at Trinity College, Cambridge, and subsequently held posts at Cambridge and various other major universities, interspersed with periods devoted to political, educational, and literary pursuits. He was author of numerous influential books and papers on philosophy, politics, and education. Few philosophers of science have had as strong a scientific background as Russell. His mathematical training at (...) Cambridge was almost entirely in applied mathematics which was largely physics. (shrink)
This volume is one of the most significant documents on the thought of the giant of the twentieth-century philosophy. Russell's 'Reply to Criticisms, ' supplemented by a 1971 'Addendum, ' displays his unrivalled clarity, perceptiveness, and scalpel-like wit, on topics ranging from mathematical logic to political philosophy, from epistemology to philosophy of history.
The Analysis of Matter is perhaps best known for marking Russell's rejection of phenomenalism and his development of a variety of Lockean representationalism–-Russell's causal theory of perception. This occupies Part 2 of the work. Part 1, which is certainly less well known, contains many observations on twentieth-century physics. Unfortunately, Russell's discussion of relativity and the foundations of physical geometry is carried out in apparent ignorance of Reichenbach's and Carnap's investigations in the same period. The issue of conventionalism (...) in its then contemporary form is simply not discussed. The only writers of the period who appear to have had any influence on Russell's conception of the philosophical issues raised by relativity were Whitehead and Eddington. Even the work of A. A. Robb fails to receive any extended discussion;1 although Robb's causal theory is certainly relevant to many of Russell's concerns, especially those voiced in Part 3, regarding the construction of points and the topology of space-time. In the case of quantum mechanics, the idiosyncrasy of Russell's selection of topics is more understandable, since the Heisenberg and Schrödinger theories were only just discovered. Nevertheless, it seems bizarre to a contemporary reader that Russell should have given such emphasis2 to G. N. Lewis's suggestion that an atom emits light only when there is another atom to receive it–-a suggestion reminiscent of Leibniz, and one to which Russell frequently returns. In short, the philosophical problems of modern physics with which Russell deals seem remote from the perspective of post-positivist philosophy of physics. (shrink)
The original 1907 text of James' Pragmatism is accompanied with a series of critical essays from scholars including Moore and Russell. In the introduction Olin evaluates the strength of the criticisms made against James.
The ideal of critical thinking is a central one in Russell's philosophy, though this is not yet generally recognized in the literature on critical thinking. For Russell, the ideal is embedded in the fabric of philosophy, science, liberalism and rationality, and this paper reconstructs Russell's account, which is scattered throughout numerous papers and books. It appears that he has developed a rich conception, involving a complex set of skills, dispositions and attitudes, which together delineate a virtue which (...) has both intellectual and moral aspects. It is a view which is rooted in Russell's epistemological conviction that knowledge is difficult but not impossible to attain, and in his ethical conviction that freedom and independence in inquiry are vital. Russell's account anticipates many of the insights to be found in the recent critical thinking literature, and his views on critical thinking are of enormous importance in understanding the nature of educational aims. Moreover, it is argued that Russell manages to avoid many of the objections which have been raised against recent accounts. With respect to impartiality, thinking for oneself, the importance of feelings and relational skills, the connection with action, and the problem of generalizability, Russell shows a deep understanding of problems and issues which have been at the forefront of recent debate. (shrink)
According to the cosmological argument, there must be a self-existent being, because, if every being were a dependent being, we would lack an explanation of the fact that there are any dependent beings at all, rather than nothing. This argument faces an important, but little-noticed objection: If self-existent beings may exist, why may not also self-explanatory facts also exist? And if self-explanatory facts may exist, why may not the fact that there are any dependent beings be a self-explanatory fact? And (...) if that fact is self-explanatory, why make recourse to self-existent beings? This line of questioning is surprisingly hard to answer, but I find resources for an answer in BertrandRussell's logical atomism. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to explain the significance of Alfred A. Robb’s philosophy of time stemming from his interpretation of relativity theory; and at the same time, to investigate the reasons for the failure of his philosophical contemporaries to appreciate its significance, with special attention to its reception on Russell’s part. The study of Russell’s reaction to Robb exposes shortcomings in Russell’s own philosophy of time, which has been extremely influential through the years. It also (...) highlights the philosophical differences between Minkowski and Robb, the shared idealistic premises of Russell and McTaggart, and the confluences between the views of Russell, Eddington and McTaggart. The paper closes with an account of how Robb’s interpretation has been vindicated by its adoption in modern physics. (shrink)
Books of extracts are often written to celebrate a reputation, or to move the reader to greater exertions by the words of the great. Neither of these reasons account for the assembling of this selection. For the traditional book of extracts reflects a traditional conception of their role, and below this conception is rejected. Rather, these extracts are thought of as working documents, selected to provide an occasion for critical and reflective thought, and presented in an order designed to ease (...) the strain we always feel when we think warily, acutely, and yet receptively. This book then deals with that contribution to discussion made by four past educationists. It is interesting to note how long their writing has formed part of the subject-matter of courses, without any precise ideas as to where they fit in the scheme of things. The layout of this introduction and the ordering of the following extracts is intended to try and help meet present needs. (shrink)
These essays present new analyzes of the central figures of analytic philosophy -- Frege, Russell, Moore, Wittgenstein, and Carnap -- from the beginnings of the analytic movement into the 1930s. The papers do not reflect a single perspective, but rather express divergent interpretations of this controversial intellectual milieu.
In preparation for his lectures on Leibniz delivered in Cambridge in Lent Term 1899, Russell started in the summer of 1898 to keep notes on writings by and about Leibniz in a large notebook of the type he commonly used for notetaking at this time. This article prints, with annotation, all the material on Leibniz in that notebook.
No sólo los especialistas en filosofía, sino también las personas interesadas en los problemas del hombre y su futuro, recibieron periódicos testimonios de la capacidad de BERTRANDRUSSELL (1872-1970) para enfrentarse, a lo largo de su dilatada y fecunda vida, con todo tipo de cuestiones, desde las muy técnicas de la teoría del conocimiento o la filosofía matemática, hasta las de la justicia y moralidad de los regímenes políticos, de los conflictos bélicos y de los sistemas sociales. Este (...) volumen de ENSAYOS FILOSÓFICOS reúne varios escritos sobre la ética, la historia y la verdad, de los que revisten singular interés los trabajos dedicados a la exposición y análisis de las concepciones acerca de la verdad y falsedad, tal como fueron expuestas por William James, y a la crítica general del pragmatismo. (shrink)