The filmmaker who tamed “The Elephant Man” undertakes the grandest vision of them all—the realization on the screen of the epic universe created by Frank Herbert. I still feel that the human race may well become extinct before the end of the present century. Its exclusion is a colossal stupidity. On his death, Russell was eulogised as “the English Voltaire”, a witty, polymathic rebel. Full credit must be given to him for this. In the Playboy interview, Russell criticized both the Soviet and US governments and called for neutral third-party countries to solve the conflict and neutralize the East-West opposition. We would then discard all but a very small number of conventional weapons. I still believe exactly what I said when I was 80, when people were asking me much the same question. If the long and stormy life of Bertrand Arthur Russell can be said to possess any unifying thread, it is an enduring attitude of passionate skepticism, a lifelong refusal to accept any truth as immutable, any law as infallible or any faith as sacred. We welcome all forces which stand on positions of peace. RUSSELL: Yes. Playboy interviews were one platform that gave these feared enemies opportunities to explain their views to American audiences and present overt critiques of US foreign policy. Would you agree or disagree with this appraisal? As spiritual leader of the famed Committee of 100, a ban-the-bomb group that commands widespread popular support in Britain, he has also earned international eminence—and a brief prison term for civil disobedience—as the most articulate agitator for the controversial cause of unilateral disarmament. PLAYBOY: You were recently threatened with expulsion from the Labor Party for urging Western representatives to attend a Moscow “peace” conference and state their views. British Philosopher and Mathematician, and winner of the Nobel Prize for literature in 1950. [This essay was first published in the June 15, 1962 issue of Commonweal] "My grandfather," wrote Bertrand Russell, "whom I remember vividly, was born on the eighteenth of August, 1792, a fortnight after the poet Shelley, whose life ended in 1822. Certainly the Russians disagree with much of what I say, but I have found it just as easy—or as difficult— to get publicity for my views in the Soviet press as in the English press. Every school, with hardly any exception, has as one of its objects the deception of children. RUSSELL: Though they have mattered differently at different times, the question of international peace certainly transcends any I have ever been concerned with or any issue that previously excited me. I have lived in the pursuit of a vision, both personal and social: personal, to care for what is noble, for what is beautiful, for what is gentle, to allow moments of insight to impart wisdom in mundane times; social, to envision in imagination an attainable society in which the individual can grow freely, in which hate and greed and envy will die because there is nothing to nourish them. The risk of war by accident—an unintended war triggered by an explosive situation such as that in Cuba—remains and indeed grows greater all the time. But it is not worthwhile for us to go into the question of whether Russia or America has the better system. (1878) Death … Subjects range from science and religion on side A, to “taboo morality” and “fanaticism” on side B. The subject of sex is so surrounded by superstitions and taboos that I approach it with trepidation. Bertrand Russell - On Nuclear Morality (1962).ogv download 2.6M vlc-record-2020-01-06-08h04m02s-Bertrand Russell - On Nuclear Morality (1962).mp4-.ogv download AMONG MANY other achievements, Bertrand Russell is the only philosopher to have cut an album of his work. The impact of the Cold War on American culture was enormous. They have gone almost as well as I would have liked them to go. In addition, Russell gave credit to Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev for showing himself to be “less belligerent” than Kennedy and, thus, responsible for avoiding a war of nuclear devastation. At this critical moment in the cold war, would you care to make another such appeal—perhaps suggesting specific ways in which relations can be improved—to Khrushchev and President Kennedy? So you can see that the world, for all its horrors, has left me unshaken. I cannot claim that what I have written, said and done about social and political problems has had any great importance. There are merits and demerits on both sides. I have taken the trouble to get translations of what they printed and found that they have been completely faithful. RUSSELL: We should not interfere with conventional weapons unless there is general nuclear disarmament. I think it essential to teach a certain hesitancy about dogma. In October 1961—after a decade of mounting personal outcry against the unabating arms race—Russell warned his uneasy listeners at a ban-the-bomb rally in London’s Trafalgar Square that they would be lucky if any of them were alive in a year’s time. Then there is escalation—a little war growing into a big one. RUSSELL: On the contrary. The first interviewee in the magazine to comment on foreign political tension was British philosopher Bertrand Russell, who was interviewed in its March 1963 issue (41-52), only a few months after the dangerous escalation during the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962. In a debate broadcast by the BBC in 1948 Russell came up against Frederick Copleston, a Jesuit priest, in one of the listening public’s earliest exposures to the philosophical arguments against God. You must envisage the possibility that you may be wrong. (1872) Born May 18 at Ravenscroft in Trelleck, Monmouthshire,UK. PLAYBOY: Would you say, then, considering this climate of opinion within as well as between Russia and America, that there is any realistic hope of drafting a global disarmament plan which would be acceptable to both sides? Last summer I sent a message to Moscow in which I expressed the wish that in all negotiations between East and West, the negotiator for the Communists should begin by saying that the universal victory of capitalism would be less disastrous than nuclear war. At present economic power is too much concentrated in the hands of a few big men who control the lives of others to an undesirable degree. Russell, known as an antimilitarism activist, served as a forceful intermediary between the opposing parties at the time of the missile crisis. It has always been practiced at different times and places. Your email address will not be published. RUSSELL: If I were to make another such appeal, I would have to begin by repeating what I said in 1957. RUSSELL: No. They teach them patriotism, to salute the flag. PLAYBOY: Do you feel now that this dream of a free and happy world was perhaps little more than the kind of utopian vision which has always inspired man in youth—and so often disenchanted him in maturity? Released in 1962, “Bertrand Russell Speaking” was a greatest hits of the many interviews he had given. At present each has an entirely melodramatic conception of the other, and I think that the Russian Government in particular encourages this view by not allowing Russian tourists to visit other countries except in small organized groups. Despite his Victorian upbringing, Russell’s views and legacy are remarkably contemporary. Born May 18 1872 in Trellech, Wales, UK Died Feb 2 1970 in Penrhyndeudraeth, Wales, UK An influential British logician, philosopher, mathematician, populariser of philosophy and social commentator He is without question one of the world’s most successful, and brilliant, composers for film, although he continues to write surprising music for the concert hall as well. His greatest hits are a good substitute for the intelligent conversation you are missing. What I am saying is this: When two great powers disagree about anything—it doesn’t matter what—they must find a way to settle it somehow by arbitration or by negotiation, not by war or threat of war.

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