Awards: Nobel Prize in Literature in
Born: 18/05/1872 in Trellech, a village in
Died: of influenza on 02/02/1970 in
Penrhyndeudraeth, also a village in Welsh County,Wales.
Bertrand Arthur William Russell, in short Bertrand
Russell was a British philosopher, mathematician, thinker, logician
who tried recast philosophy in the mould of mathematics and logic. He
was born to a prominent aristocratic family of Britain. Tragedy struck
the family after his birth. His mother died two years after his birth
in 1874 of diptheria followed by father in 1876 from bronchitis.
Russel's adolescence was very lonely
and he often contemplated suicide. The only thing that kept him alive
was his immense love of mathematics and study of religion.At the age
of 11, he studied Euclid at the behest of his brother Frank and at the
age of 15, he chewing and digesting Shelley. At that time, he deeply
contemplated about human will and came to the conclusion that there
was no free will and that no life existed after death. After reading
John Stuart Mill, he became an atheist.
Russell studied in
Trinity College, Cambridge for Mathematical Tripos and in 1903
published Principia Mathematica along with A N White head where he
discussed Russell Paradox and also concluded that mathematics could be
deducted from a small number of principles.
Russell described that at
the age of 29, in February 1901, he had suddenly undergone a mystic
illumination for 5 minutes after witnessing Whitehead's wife writhing
in acute angina pain. At the end of 5 minutes, he was a completely
Russell was an anti-imperialist and gave a
public lecture in 1918 against Britain inviting US to join Second
World War. This resulted in 6 months' imprisonment. While in prison ,
he penned Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy .
During the later years he wrote A History of
Western Philosophy which became a best seller and was a constant
source of income till his last days.
Major Influence: John Stuart Mill, Leibniz,
Hume, Locke, Spinoza, Whitehead
Mathematica(1901), The Problems of Philosophy(1912),
Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy(1919), In Praise of
Idleness(1935), A History of Western Philosophy(1946),
Why I am not a Christian(1957), Unpopular Essays, My
Philosophical Development, THe Scientific Outlook, Skeptical Essays,
Authority and The Individual,
Bertrand Russell's Books below