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2 Hawthorne Philosophy- General

Why I Am Not a Christian: And Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects


Why I Am Not a Christian: And Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects Cover


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

“Devastating in its use of cold logic,” (The Independent), the classic essay collection that expresses the freethinker’s views to religion and challenges set notions in today’s society from one of the most influential intellectual figures of the twentieth century.

Dedicated as few men have been to the life of reason, Bertrand Russell has always been concerned with the basic questions to which religion also addresses itself—questions about man’s place in the universe and the nature of the good life, questions that involve life after death, morality, freedom, education, and sexual ethics. He brings to his treatment of these questions the same courage, scrupulous logic, and lofty wisdom for which his other work as philosopher, writer, and teacher has been famous. These qualities make the essays included in this book perhaps the most graceful and moving presentation of the freethinker's position since the days of Hume and Voltaire.

“I am as firmly convinced that religions do harm as I am that they are untrue,” Russell declares in his Preface, and his reasoned opposition to any system or dogma which he feels may shackle man’s mind runs through all the essays in this book, whether they were written as early as 1899 or as late as 1954.

The book has been edited, with Lord Russell’s full approval and cooperation, by Professor Paul Edwards of the Philosophy Department of New York University. In an Appendix, Professor Edwards contributes a full account of the highly controversial “Bertrand Russell Case” of 1940, in which Russell was judicially declared “unfit” to teach philosophy at the College of the City of New York.

Whether the reader shares or rejects Bertrand Russell’s views, he will find this book an invigorating challenge to set notions, a masterly statement of a philosophical position, and a pure joy to read.

About the Author

Bertrand Arthur William Russell, 3rd Earl Russell, Viscount Amberley, born in Wales, May 18, 1872. Educated at home and at Trinity College, Cambridge. During World War I, served four months in prison as a pacifist, where he wrote Introduction To Mathematical Philosophy. In 1910, published first volume of Principia Mathematica with Alfred Whitehead. Visited Russia and lectured on philosophy at the University of Peking in 1920. Returned to England and, with his wife, ran a progressive school for young children in Sussex from 1927-1932. Came to the United States, where he taught philosophy successively at the University of Chicago, University of California at Los Angeles, Harvard, and City College of New York. Awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950. Has been active in disarmament and anti-nuclear-testing movements while continuing to add to his large number of published books which include Philosophical Essays (1910); The ABC of Relativity (1925); A History of Western Philosophy (1946); Human Knowledge: Its Scope and Limits (1948); and The Autobiography of Bertrand Russell (1967). For a chronological list of Russell's principal works see The Basic Writings of Bertrand Russell (Simon and Schuster).

Table of Contents


Preface by Bertrand Russell

Editor's Introduction

Why I Am Not a Christian

Has Religion Made Useful Contributions to Civilization?

What I Believe

Do We Survive Death?

Seems, Madam? Nay, It Is

A Free Man's Worship

On Catholic and Protestant Skeptics

Life in the Middle Ages

The Fate of Thomas Paine

Nice People

The New Generation

Our Sexual Ethics

Freedom and the Colleges

Can Religion Cure Our Troubles?

Religion and Morals

Appendix: How Bertrand Russell Was Prevented from Teaching at The College of the City of New York


Product Details

Russell, Bertrand Arthur
Touchstone Books
New York, N.Y. :
Free Will & Determinism
Free thought
History & Surveys - Modern
General Religion
Religion Comparative-General
philosophy; essays on religion; athiest; agnostic; agnosticism; Paul Edwards; atheism; doubts on Christianity
Edition Description:
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
October 1967
Grade Level:
8.44 x 5.5 in 8.54 oz

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Humanities » Philosophy » Atheism and Humanism
Humanities » Philosophy » General
Religion » Comparative Religion » General
Religion » Eastern Religions » Philosophy General

Why I Am Not a Christian: And Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects Used Trade Paper
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Product details 256 pages Touchstone Books - English 9780671203238 Reviews:
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