Bertrand Russell’s classic primer on Western philosophy and the greatest thinkers of the past three millennia
With zest and rigor, Bertrand Russell applies twentieth-century thinking to age-old philosophy, from the works of Plato and Aristotle to those of René Descartes and John Locke. In The Problems of Philosophy, he reviews the Western canon’s most influential ideas and thought experiments, offering a comprehensive and enlightening text for curious and seasoned philosophy readers alike. Infused with Russell’s own observations and critiques, this study offers reviews of topics such as idealism, knowledge, and the natures of truth, reality, and existence. Including the author’s prominent thinking on knowledge by acquaintance versus knowledge by description, The Problems of Philosophy is a critical look at the major philosophical accomplishments spanning from classical Greece to the twentieth century.
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Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, social reformer, and pacifist. Although he spent the majority of his life in England, he was born in Wales, where he also died. Russell led the British “revolt against Idealism” in the early twentieth century and is one of the founders of analytic philosophy along with his protégé Wittgenstein and his elder Frege. He co-authored, with A. N. Whitehead, Principia Mathematica, an attempt to ground mathematics on logic. His philosophical essay “On Denoting” has been considered a “paradigm of philosophy.” Both works have had a considerable influence on logic, mathematics, set theory, linguistics and analytic philosophy. He was a prominent anti-war activist, championing free trade between nations and anti-imperialism. Russell was imprisoned for his pacifist activism during World War I, campaigned against Adolf Hitler, for nuclear disarmament. He criticized Soviet totalitarianism and the United States of America’s involvement in the Vietnam War. In 1950, Russell was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, “in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.”
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