Bertrand Russell, the third Earl Russell, is the twentieth century's most important liberal thinker, one of two or three of its major philosophers, and a prophet for millions of the creative and rational life. He was born in 1872, at the height of Britain's economic and political ascendancy, and died in 1970 when Britain's empire had all but vanished and her power had been drained in two victorious but debilitating world wars. At his death, however, his voice still carried moral authority, for he was one of the world's most influential critics of nuclear weapons and the American war in Vietnam.
--The Bertrand Russell Gallery at McMaster University
Bertrand Russell was, during the course of a long (1872-1970) life, the grandson of the Prime Minister of England, Lord John Russell, the godson of John Stuart Mill, a profound mathematician whose Principia Mathematica, written with Alfred North Whitehead is still at the center of modern debate about the basis of mathematics, an agnostic bordering on atheism, something of a mystic, a friendly philosophical antagonist of William James, an expert on the philosophy of Leibniz , a libertarian socialist, jailed for opposing the First World War ...
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from the Anarchist Reading List at: http://www.zpub.com/notes/aan-read.html