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Lexilogio

Betrand Russell - Philosopher or commentator

Bertrand Russell was a very influential thinker in the twentieth century - but could he genuinely be called a philosopher?
genghiscant

A definite yes.
Lexilogio

genghiscant wrote:
A definite yes.


 You can't just say yes - you have to say why!

Bertrand Russell wrote about philosophy - but did he introduce anything new? Take any concepts forward?
Shaker

I'll bite  

A definite yes, but his most important contributions to philosophy were in founding analytical philosophy (along with Wittgenstein) and in formal logic, such as in the Principia Mathematica which he co-wrote with A.N. Whitehead. These were and are areas which were and are way, way above the comprehension of all but the most scholarly and academic philosophers - only the very few can follow along. It's easy to see why he might be thought of as merely a commentator since even today his popular reputation rests on the huge number of books and articles pitched at a lay audience - philosophical issues couched in clear, non-technical language for the ordinary reader. Because of its sheer volume (much of this is still in print and can be found in any High Street bookshop to this day) it has tended to overshadow his really, really technical work, but yes, he was a real philosopher.
genghiscant

Yeah. What he said.
Lexilogio

Shaker wrote:
I'll bite  

A definite yes, but his most important contributions to philosophy were in founding analytical philosophy (along with Wittgenstein) and in formal logic, such as in the Principia Mathematica which he co-wrote with A.N. Whitehead. These were and are areas which were and are way, way above the comprehension of all but the most scholarly and academic philosophers - only the very few can follow along. It's easy to see why he might be thought of as merely a commentator since even today his popular reputation rests on the huge number of books and articles pitched at a lay audience - philosophical issues couched in clear, non-technical language for the ordinary reader. Because of its sheer volume (much of this is still in print and can be found in any High Street bookshop to this day) it has tended to overshadow his really, really technical work, but yes, he was a real philosopher.


So was he involved in the same linguistical philosophy as Wittengstein? That is quite difficult to follow in places.
Ketty

Aren't we all (amateur) philosophers?  We don't need to know to which 'school' we belong, or any technical jargon associated with all that stuff.  Sorry, again this must be brief due to the need to sit in a wardrobe to post (blimmin' hotel Wifi!).
genghiscant

I agree.


Quote:
phi·los·o·pher
   [fi-los-uh-fer] Show IPA

noun
1.
a person who offers views or theories on profound questions in ethics, metaphysics, logic, and other related fields.

2.
a person who is deeply versed in philosophy.

3.
a person who establishes the central ideas of some movement, cult, etc.

4.
a person who regulates his or her life, actions, judgments, utterances, etc., by the light of philosophy  or reason.

5.
a person who is rationally or sensibly calm, especially under trying circumstances.
Lexilogio

I do agree, a philosopher, generally, is one who considers the big questions. Which makes all of us at least amateur philosophers.

Did Russell make significant contributions to a particular field?
Mr Spock

Berty Russ did philosophy so was a philosopher. I would not say he was one of the greats but neither am I.  " alt="" border="0" />

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