"If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing" Bertrand Arthur William Russell(1872-1970) By Jessica Gantick and Irving Martínez
Background • Born in, Ravenscroft, Trellech, Monmouthshire, Wales 1972 • Family dies 1774 (mom and sister) 1776 (dad) • Raised by grandparents (grandmother mostly) • Grandmother overruled Bertrand’s parents’ wishes for him to be agnostic. • He did not attend school, was tutored, and became fluent in French and German. 
Grief • Grieving over his family’s death, he became suicidal. • Wasn’t happy with his life at all. 
Turning Point • Frank (his brother) introduced him to Euclid • Greek Mathematician; “Father of Geometry” • Changed Bertrands views on life. • Also turned by the work of Percy Besshe Shelley, a romantic poet. • Also intrigued by the the religious views of christianity. 
The College Life • Earned a scholarship to attend The Trinity College in Cambridge. • He read for the mathematical Tripos: • It was the “Senate House Examination” consisted of 16 papers spread over 8 daysand a total of 211 questions. • In 1893, he got his B.A in Mathematics with high honors • In 1894, he went back for The Moral Sciences Tripos.
His Fair Share • He had a total of four wives. • 1894- Marries Alyssa(Alys) WhitallPearshall Smith • Separated in 1911, divorced in 1921 • 1921- Marries Dora Black • Had a son, John Russell, 1921, and a daughter, Kate Russell, in 1923. • Together they opened Beacon Hill School • An experimental school taught children to leave behind superstions and irrational views that were to be left in the past. • In 1935, They get a divorce. • In 1936, marries Patricia (Peter) Helen Spence • Had a son named Conrad Sebastian Robert Russell • Separated in 1949 • 1952- marries Edith Finch • His favorite wife
Political Campaigns • Elected to the royal society in 1908 • Free trade • Women’s Suffrage • Anti- war and anti- nuclear protests • Spent six months in prison, and having bee arrested on two separate occasions for the same things [B1]
Major Publications • The Principles of Mathematics – A mathematical logic book describing how mathematics could be deduced from very few principles and proving to be a great contribution to the cause of logicism.  • Principia Mathematica – This three-volume work is an attempt to derive all mathematical truths from a well-defined set of axioms and inference rules in symbolic logic.  • “On Denoting” – It introduces definite and indefinite descriptions, formulates descriptivism with regard to proper names, and characterizes proper names as "disguised" or "abbreviated" definite descriptions. 
Russell Politics 2301 • Russell was never a complete pacifist. He resisted specific wars on the grounds that they were contrary to the interests of civilization, and thus immoral. • In the years leading to World War II, he supported the policy of appeasement; but by 1940 he acknowledged that in order to preserve democracy, Hitler had to be defeated. • He pointed out that at the time the Soviet Union did not yet possess a nuclear capability but that it would very soon do so, after which all history made it clear that sooner or later there would be a nuclear war between the two superpowers that would be infinitely more devastating than either of the two world wars through which he had lived. The only sure way of preventing this Armageddon, he concluded with remorseless if unpalatable logic, was for America to launch a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union before it acquired the bomb: after that it would be too late.  • In a nutshell, he campaigned against Adolf Hitler, then criticised Stalinist totalitarianism, attacked the United States of America's involvement in the Vietnam War, and was an outspoken proponent of nuclear disarmament. 
Several of Russell's prestigious awards are here displayed together. Among them, the Order of Merit (top left) and the related certificate signed by King George VI (bottom left), the Nobel Prize for Literature (top centre) and the accompanying medallion (at base of certificate). See below for detailed views of these awards. 
Nobel Prize of Literature “In recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.“ 
Glossary • Logicism._ The doctrine, developed chiefly by Gottlob Frege and Bertrand Russell, that mathematics can be reduced to logic. • Axiom._ A proposition that is not susceptible of proof or disproof. • Rule of Inference._ The act of drawing a conclusion based on the form of premises interpreted as a function. • Appeasement._ A diplomatic policy aimed at avoiding war by making concessions to another power. • Totalitarianism._ A political system where the state recognizes no limits to its authority and strives to regulate every aspect of public and private life wherever feasible.
“Three passions, simple but overwhelmingly strong, have governed my life: the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind”
Bibliography • http://www.personal.kent.edu/~rmuhamma/Philosophy/bertrandRussell.html • http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/russell/ • http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1950/russell-bio.html • http://fair-use.org/bertrand-russell/the-principles-of-mathematics/ • http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/principia-mathematica/#SOPM • http://cscs.umich.edu/~crshalizi/Russell/denoting/ • http://www.cut-the-knot.org/selfreference/russell.shtml • http://www.economist.com/node/699582/print?Story_ID=699582 • http://russell.mcmaster.ca/~bertrand/ • http://russell.mcmaster.ca/~bertrand/awards.html • http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/1950/russell-bio.html