Autobiography (Routledge Classics)
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Bertrand Russell remains one of the greatest philosophers and most complex and controversial figures of the twentieth century. Here, in this frank, humorous and decidedly charming autobiography, Russell offers readers the story of his life – introducing the people, events and influences that shaped the man he was to become. Originally published in three volumes in the late 1960s, Autobiography by Bertrand Russell is a revealing recollection of a truly extraordinary life written with the vivid freshness and clarity that has made Bertrand Russell’s writings so distinctively his own.
partly due to my education. How absurd it would be to follow these in the questions of right and wrong. For as I observed before, the inherited part can only be principles leading to the preservation of the species to which I belong, the part due to education is good or bad according to the individual education. Yet this inner voice, this God-given conscience which made Bloody Mary burn the Protestants, this is what we reasonable beings are to follow. I think this idea mad and I endeavour to go
die, so I agreed to go to Paris for a minimum of three months, on the understanding that if that produced no eﬀect upon my feelings, my people would no longer actively oppose my marriage. My career in diplomacy, however, was brief and inglorious. I loathed the work, and the people, and the atmosphere of cynicism, and the separation from Alys. My brother came over to visit me, and although I did not know it at the time, he had been asked to come by my people, in order to form a judgement on the
armchair, and then walked up and down with the baby. Then he stood for a long while, looking at the watery horizon as if he were asking some question of it. But the dismal unwellness of his wife and baby soon put an end to his meditations. What a warning to youth! And I might have been in his place! I hope you went to the debate to prove that the upper classes are uneducated – those broad generalisations are so stimulating – there is so much that one can say. I hope you mean to join our order,
persisted in, the chairman remarked: ‘Surely this is not the way that Wimbledon men and women greet a stranger.’ (A Voice: ‘Are we down-hearted?’ and cries of ‘No’.) A minute or so later the chairman again made an appeal to the rowdy section, and by asking them not to disgrace the name of Wimbledon he secured quietness for a time. Mr Russell declared that he stood ﬁrst and foremost for the suffrage for women on the same terms as men, and on the terms on which hereafter it might be granted to men.
ashamed of it, and the country round has the typical English charm of ﬁelds and meadows and broad open views, with Oxford and the river besides. Alys seems to like the place thoroughly, and has been on the whole much better than in town. I ﬁnd it a great advantage being in touch with Oxford people – it is easier to keep alive my interest in work when I can bring it into some relation with human interests. I have had to take myself in hand rather severely, and being here has made it much more