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Proposed Roads to Freedom

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  452 Ratings  ·  34 Reviews
A study of Socialism, Anarchism and Syndicalism
Published by (first published 1918)
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Marts  (Thinker)
Feb 18, 2009 Marts (Thinker) rated it really liked it
Highlighting the effects of nature and society on man's decision-making, Russell in his introduction states that "THE attempt to conceive imaginatively a better ordering of human society than the destructive and cruel chaos in which mankind has hitherto existed is by no means modern..."
I rather appreciate the intro's second paragraph though where he says, "The great majority of men and women, in ordinary times, pass through life without ever contemplating or criticising, as a whole, either their
Dec 11, 2011 Tom rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an excellent little book promoting a form of guild socialism, as opposed to state socialism or pure anarchism. It's probably the most anti-utopian, anti-idealist account of a socialist society I've yet read (which isn't to say that it doesn't have its moments). It's fair and level-headed, and it doesn't suppose that abolishing private property will solve all of society's ills. The one major complaint I have is that when it comes to economic distribution and production Russell glosses ove ...more
Eric Gulliver
May 29, 2007 Eric Gulliver rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics, philosophy
This was a concise, yet abstract vision from Bertrand Russell. Favoring what some would call "Anarchist - Guild Socialism", Russell Fleshes out with precise detail, the shortfalls and possibilities of the realms associated with socialism and anarchism (in its many various forms). Russell makes use of familiar examples and reasonable rhetorical experiments in an attempt to paint a picture of what the difference between utopian and reality actually is, all in regards of supposed and proposed roads ...more
Jun 01, 2008 Matthew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everybody
Everyone should read this book.
Kent Winward
Jan 01, 2017 Kent Winward rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is great for a historic look back at these philosophies. This was written almost one hundred years ago, so the implications of these different philosophies has changed over the years, but we need to know where we have been to figure out where we are going.
Tammam Aloudat
Russell, in his vivid and logical language, and spending very little time asserting that capitalism is a failure that encompasses injustice, oppression, and tyranny; writes this volume to discuss and analyse the possible alternative. He choses the two prevailing prospects in the time he has written it, socialism and anarchism.

Given that the book has been written in 1918, it is astonishing how accurate his analysis is and how little has changed in the past century.

While he writes well before the
John Collins
Jan 29, 2015 John Collins rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Proposed Roads to Freedom by Bertrand Russell. This is my introduction to Russell and his writings, and the book provides a worth while overview of a subject I am deeply interested in. I am always interested by the philosophical, sociological, and political, but this book touches on the subjects of anarchism and socialism of which I am an adherent. It touches on these, and basically provides an overview of these ideas, without getting into too much depth. These are the 'proposed roads to freedom ...more
Gabriel Jardim
Nov 08, 2016 Gabriel Jardim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nessa obra, Russell faz, primeiramente, um apanhado geral das três causas - Socialismo, Anarquismo e Sindicalismo - com que, partindo de algumas de suas proposições, propõe-e a analisar certos problemas, que incluem, por exemplo, a coletivização, a remuneração do trabalho, relações internacionais e a arte e a ciência sob esses sistemas.

É, decerto, que nessa obra se pode encontrar textos e reflexões com a perícia e a fluidez características de Bertrand Russell, porém não tão somente referentes a
Dec 07, 2016 Andrew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent, accessible overview of guild socialism and its potential to transform society. Russell's prose is simple and straightforward and, despite its outdated views on race and ethnicity, remains relevant.
Russell is mostly known as a great logician and one of the founders of analytic philosophy. He was also a very prolific writer on social issues which eventually granted him a Nobel prize in literature. Who would have imagined that such a mainstream figure would openly advocate the abolition of capitalism and instead propose some form of Guild Socialism that appears to be very close to traditional Anarchism? Inspired mostly by G.D.H. Cole and Peter Kropotkin, this book remains a serious discussio ...more
Nov 08, 2013 Alexander rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Given when this was written it is a very clear, concise and logical step by step guide to the possible advantages and disadvantages of various styles of Socialist societies. Bertrand breaks down Marxist thinking and investigates the three main 'routes' discussing them in a clear and rational way before looking at how society would function.

What I would of liked was to see how/if Betrand's views changed after seeing what happened to the political Left after WWI and WWII. But, perhaps he wrote tha
Sam Motes
Jun 09, 2013 Sam Motes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Russell discusses the virtues and draw backs of state Socialism and Anarchism as alternatives to Capitalism. Though he builds the case that they may not be the ideal options he goes on to discuss Guild Socialism that takes on a very protectionist stance by putting the unions and trades in charge to protect their members. Interesting idea but still did not build a compelling reason why is wouldn't lead to a chase to the bottom as people life of the labor of others and no one is motivated t give e ...more
Anders Brabaek
Mar 06, 2016 Anders Brabaek rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
If you haven't read Russell before, this is not where you should start - and more importantly, not where you should end.
Russell wrote this book almost 100 years ago, and as that much of the book is dated unless your are interested in the historical perspective. Even so, the discussions, and maybe particularly the last chapter; "The World as it could be made", still remains relevant.

Also, the book doesn't deliver Russell's best prose, but Russell was excellent even when not at his best.
Jan 21, 2016 Satya rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book discusses the Socialism, Anarchism and Syndicalism. Bertrand Russell advocates his belief in this book that communal ownership of land and capital, which constitutes the characteristic doctrines of Socialism and Anarchist Communism, is a necessary step towards the removal of the evils from which the world suffers today; and finally, the road to all that is best is the road to freedom!
Útil para arrancar a pensar sobre cuestiones sociales y útil como introducción crítica a las corrientes políticas que se nombra. Russell habla también de corrientes mixtas, y ofrece su propia opinión sobre el sistema que le gustaría a él. Aunque breve (bien para algunos, mal para otros, o nada de esta clasificación, según lo que busquen).
Jun 25, 2012 Zula rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Если бы было шесть звездочек, я бы шесть поставила :)
Теперь я социал-анархист! Книга написана в марте 1918 года, он с такой точностью описал социализм который мы построили на бывшей родине, и, что самое интересное, у него очень умные мысли по поводу того как надо устроить общество, чтобы людям было хорошо.
كتاب جيد لغير المتخصصين اللي زي حالاتي إلا انه مش أفضل ما كتب راسل ولا حتى في حيز كتابات راسل الجيده على الإطلاق .. بعد نبذة عن تاريخ الحركات اليساريه في أوروبا بيتحول الكتاب لمحاضرة "مثل سياسية" اللي ككتاب مستقل كان كويس الا انه مخلوط باظهار أشكال فشل المنظومات اليساريه مجرد هراء رومانسي على تحليل نقدي في شقين جمعهم غلاف واحد
Dec 18, 2013 Nance rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This rating is for "Selected Papers of Bertrand Russell". One hundred years later and nothing much has changed with the political systems of the world, none of them work for the working people. This not to say that Mr. Russell's solutions would work but he was able to define the problems with intelligence.
Claudia (Babs)
Jul 18, 2016 Claudia (Babs) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, 2016, ens-div
La verdad es que empecé el libro con miedo a que fuese muy pesado y/o teórico teniendo en cuenta la temática del mismo y todo lo contrario.

Súper ameno el estilo con el que está escrito y muy muy interesante. Le pongo 5/5 y me quedo con ganas de leer más cositas suyas :)))))
Dec 24, 2014 Evan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Waving between idealism and realism, this is a highly interesting intellectual examination of Socialism and Anarchism from a time when they were not yet defeated and discredited. An interesting counterpart to "The Road to Serfdom".
Jun 09, 2014 Jamie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
Hugely informative, very accessible, and expertly written. A well argued and well thought out look various political and economic systems. Sounds like a dry subject matter, but Russell makes it fascinating.
Oct 13, 2009 Ben rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my intro into russel, and I have to say that I was impressed with his vision and clarity in presenting the concepts and brief historical context of socialism, anarchism and the mysterious syndicalism.
Kevin Lee
The collapse of communism at the end of the last millenium does not stop this permanent human pursuit, as well as the "Great Recession" at the end of 1st decade of this millenium does not vindicate capitalism... So where is the way....
Feb 27, 2013 Davey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Clear and bright. Got me really thinking into it. Was never really into communism etc but now kind of interested. Maybe because i am an adolescent now and not yet grown up ...
rather pedestrian, really. Expected more. Got off some good one-liners, but not something I'll ever read again, that's for sure.
Sep 02, 2013 Ana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not a cynic, but a rational, analytical mind - I feel infinite tenderness towards the optimism of such a highly intelligent human being.

Let there be commerce between us.
Jonas Dornelles
do alto do ceticismo, do alto da lógica, do pragmatismo, Bertrand Russell nos indica os caminhos da liberdade possível. Obrigado grande mestre!
Timothy Wood
Dec 13, 2015 Timothy Wood rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Incredible! This book is well written and covers a wide range of topics present to anarchists, socialists, and socialists.
Jan 21, 2008 Matteo marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: anarchism
The full title of this book (why doesn't GoodReads list it that way?) is:

Proposed Roads to Freedom:
Socialism, Anarchism and Syndicalism
Mark Nenadov
Jul 21, 2011 Mark Nenadov rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: socialism
Some interesting analysis mixed with fanciful imaginings. He proposes guild socialism, I say its better than state socialism–but it still smells very foul.
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Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, OM, FRS, was a Welsh philosopher, historian, logician, mathematician, advocate for social reform, pacifist, and prominent rationalist. Although he was usually regarded as English, as he spent the majority of his life in England, he was born in Wales, where he also died.

He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1950 "in recognition of his var
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“The great majority of men and women, in ordinary times, pass through life without ever contemplating or criticising, as a whole, either their own conditions or those of the world at large. They find themselves born into a certain place in society, and they accept what each day brings forth, without any effort of thought beyond what the immediate present requires. Almost as instinctively as the beasts of the field, they seek the satisfaction of the needs of the moment, without much forethought, and without considering that by sufficient effort the whole conditions of their lives could be changed. A certain percentage, guided by personal ambition, make the effort of thought and will which is necessary to place themselves among the more fortunate members of the community; but very few among these are seriously concerned to secure for all the advantages which they seek for themselves. It is only a few rare and exceptional men who have that kind of love toward mankind at large that makes them unable to endure patiently the general mass of evil and suffering, regardless of any relation it may have to their own lives.” 9 likes
“In Labor movements generally, success through violence can hardly be expected except in circumstances where success without violence is attainable.” 0 likes
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