A concise version of Bertrand Russell's political philosophy and thoughts, focusing on his favoring of guild socialism. While Russell believed that pure Anarchism should be the ultimate goal, his realism lead him to favor the guild socialism which he expands upon in this volume. Russell first discusses the various aspects of socialism, anarchism, and syndicalism, focusing also on the major men/movements associated with each school, Marx and socialism, Bakunin and anarchy, and CGT (Confederation Generale du Travail) and syndicalism. He then lays out problems that will exist for the future if these philosophies are adhered to and focuses on various areas including international relations and science/art.
Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970) was a British philosopher considered to be one of the founders of analytic philosophy. He was considered a liberal, a socialist, and a pacifist, as well as a historian, logician, mathematician, and social critic. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1950 and wrote several volumes on his views.
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Bertrand Russell is dreaming.
This book is about socialism and the various strains of it. The author is obviously a socialist, and he's dreaming. He seems to be talking about a world where everyone only has to do a few hours work every day. A world that doesn't exist.
Having said that, everyone should read this book because the author is one of the most influential writers on the 20th century. What he says in this book matters.
- Jacob Lively
Good start, problematic ending
As much as I enjoyed the start of the book for its accurate, educational portrayal of Anarchism and "State Socialism," and positioned Guild Socialism as the ideal first step forward until such a time as society achieves a state of anarchy (pardon the pun), the latter half of the book was deeply problematic.
Eugenics and white supremacy were a serious issue in the early to mid 20th century (always were, really, but especially then) and to have a call for socialist nations to literally continue imperializing Africa due to the abhorrent belief that black people are incapable of self-determination is disgusting.
It astounds me that in any time period someone who so clearly and accurately lays out the underlying concepts of several leftist ideologies would not extend the same working class solidarity he claims to call for to other people solely on account of the color of their skin.