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Political Ideals
Bertrand Russell
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Political Ideals

3.85  ·  Rating Details ·  338 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
Bertrand Russell's "Political Ideals" is a classic work read by book lovers, students and scholars. This is a special edition which exposes readers to a variety of English phrases and terminology from this genre. While the text is in English, the "click and translate" thesaurus, in Turkish, is a perfect tool for Turkish speakers who need to enjoy this English-language clas ...more
Hardcover, 93 pages
Published 1964 by Simon Schuster (first published 1917)
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Billie Pritchett
Political Ideals is a long lecture that Bertrand Russell was banned from giving (I believe at a university), but which one of his friends read in his stead, and his friend only afterward credited Russell as the writer of the lecture. His friend did this for him because he thought, apparently, the lecture was important enough to give. Political Ideals is a book that promotes human beings' innate creative capacities instead of their innate possessive tendencies. Seeming inconsistencies in the book ...more
Manik Sukoco
Jan 06, 2016 Manik Sukoco rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Each individual has an opinion about that which he sees, and thus that individual has his own "slant" that he considers to be correct. The opinion of one man can either be in agreement with the writer, or holding fast to his own view. I find myself in diametric opposition to Russell on his "Stand on God" because I have great faith in an All Powerful Creator. However The firmness of our convictions cannot prove or disprove the intangible nature of the Infinite, of which, neither has a complete "P ...more
Eric Gulliver
Oct 15, 2009 Eric Gulliver rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
This was a lecture that Russell wrote during the first world war, and thus, contained vital tokens of his political thought along with romantic language he used to encourage. I chose to read this because I am endlessly interested in Russell's critique of BOTH ideologies of conservatism and socialism. In these pages, one can find Russell's explicit denunciation of capitalism and the wage system (as he calls for it to be abolished) as well as his complete disregard for any form social organization ...more
even tho I have always been a fan of Russell's analysis methodology, the way he created links between impulses, thoughts actions as well as the socioeconomical characteristics of the world
I cannot help but think that his words do little but define a problem and the final form of a solution but little does it Adress the steps to combat the Futility of our endeavours to change the system by "inch by inch life is a sinch" belief
when at the same time the socioeconomical status quo from the year of
Feb 19, 2013 SS rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: politics
An exercise in childishness. Proof that the Nobel prize was always politicized.

I hope to do now what Wittgenstein, as a student, did to his Prof. Russell within the course of one ten-minute conversation. As Russell put it, "His criticism, 'tho I don't think he realized it at the time, was an event of first-rate importance in my life, and affected everything I have done since. I saw that he was right, and I saw that I could not hope ever again to do fundamental work in philosophy."

So we have Witt
Max Ward
Jan 15, 2017 Max Ward rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As my first foray into the work of Bertrand Russell, I was enthralled, from the outset, by his vivid and flowing writing. What's more, it has clarity:

"It is only because men are apathetic that this [quasi-utopia] is not achieved, only because imagination is sluggish, and what always has been is regarded as what always must be."
Elijah Oyekunle
Dec 31, 2016 Elijah Oyekunle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There are lots of political opinions running around everywhere, and these are Bertrand Russell's ideas about the wage system, capitalism, and others.
Luís Garcia
(lido em Chengdu, China)
Dec 12, 2009 Kevin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this part-political manifesto and part-treatise on human nature, perhaps the twentieth century’s most eminent philosopher launches a broad-based and general attack on the capitalist system, and the many important ways in which it crushes human potential. As this is a short text based more on general platitudes and arguments-by-example, “Political Ideals” makes a solid (if unremarkable) introduction to leftist critiques of capitalism, as well as Russell’s advocacy of what he calls “gild social ...more
Jul 29, 2011 Aniruddha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bertrand Russell wasn't much of a political scientist but this book presents his political ideas in the most succinct form. Political Ideals is about socialism, nationalism and internationalism. It is about one society and all societies. The book is a very promising one. It talks about co-operation in place of conflict. It denounces state socialism but also targets wage-system and the British bureaucracy. It is neither 'socialist'in the sense of its times but neither very critical of it. It pres ...more
Feb 23, 2016 heidi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my first time reading Bertrand Russell in English, his native language. His one book that I read years ago was a verbose and yawn-inducing Malay translation of "Introduction to Mathematical Philosophy." I will never make the same mistake again. Russell's writing in its original form is eloquent and crystal clear. This book has made me a fan.

I like how progressive and humane Russell's philosophy was for his era. In fact they are so progressive that even today, many people I know still fai
Christopher Lee
Jun 06, 2014 Christopher Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The parallels between the mindset of nations during WWI has shifted so little that it would be hard to determine one from the either outside of manner of speech and dress. The topics covered here are really common sense items that we are still debating today, International Affairs, Wars, Wage vs Work, Captialism and the greed that goes with it. Not wholly socialistic; however, a simple outline of what could be the effects on a nation by injecting small pieces of democratic control by the people ...more
Διόνυσος Ελευθέριος
Reading Bertrand Russell is always a pleasure, though his work is not without pitfalls. The pleasure in reading his work comes from the clarity of his writing, and the ease with which he communicates his ideas. The pitfalls come from the chronic suspicion that he brings to his work a great deal of preconceptions about the material that he writes so clearly about. Another way of saying this is that although Russell's descriptions are very often easy to agree with—and this is something especially ...more
Jul 31, 2013 Ana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Few men seem to realize how many of the evils from which we suffer are wholly unnecessary, and that they could be abolished by a united effort within a few years. If a majority in every civilized country so desired,we could, within twenty years, abolish all abject poverty, quite half the illness in the world, the whole economic slavery which binds down nine tenths of our population; we could fill the world with beauty and joy, and secure the reign of universal peace. It is only because men are ...more
Cory Giles
May 13, 2009 Cory Giles rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Russell's basic point in the book is that government ought to liberate people to do creative acts, rather than forcing them to be possessively oriented towards material goods. He points out that creativity means work doesn't have to be a zero-sum game: when we create literature or art, we can have our cake, and so can everyone else.

It's certainly food for thought. But this book was written before the Cold War, so it paints socialism a little rosily. And it uses the word "ought" far too often; sa
Nov 23, 2012 Alexandre rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bertrand Russel has a critical and logical view of humanities, specially regarding the known political systems. The main problem with this book is the same of many philosophical ideas: real systems or ideas are criticized but no better practical solution are proposed, instead just fragments of better alternatives that may not work when put together. However, his comments are worth reading and I recommend the book.
Sep 04, 2014 Atte rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Much of Russell's explanations and statements still hold ground in today's societies. While some ideas and suggestions are clearly outdated, many observations are still as valid today as they were a century ago. Written during World War I, he provides a critique of possessive tendencies versus creative capacities, arguing that the latter is needed for societies to advance, and the former creates violence and tensions. All in all a very interesting read.
Sam Motes
Dec 30, 2014 Sam Motes rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Similar in content to Russell's "Roads to Freedom" but much more quotable and thought provoking. Russell continues his push for a global perspective that will take something beyond Capitalism to achieve in his view. Russell struggles through the arguments for and against different flavors of Socialism as he struggles to find an Economic system with moe equality.
May 15, 2013 Adam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think I get it now. I think I'm going to become 'that guy' and constantly espouse the virtues of Russell's ideals to whoever I come into contact with, all the while not being particularly clear on a practical implementation of them. This book is my 5-star manifesto, but I lose a star for not knowing how to properly explain it to people.
Sep 28, 2014 Jamie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
This elegant little treatise on politics, government, progress, and society is logical, sensible, and piercingly insightful. It is a testament to the depth of Russell's vision and wisdom that this nearly century old book rings as true and relevant as though it were written today.
Sep 30, 2012 Paula rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Russell is both a political man and a religious man. It resonates in the very pages... Looking forward to more.
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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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“Liberty demands self-government, but not the right to interfere with others.” 4 likes
“You may kill an artist or a thinker, but you cannot acquire his art or his thought. You may put a man do death because he loves his fellow-men, but you will not by so doing acquire the love which made his happiness.” 3 likes
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