My Philosophical Development

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My Philosophical Development is a book written by Bertrand Russell summing up his philosophical beliefs and how they changed during his life.[1]

In this book Russell gives an account of his philosophical development. He tells of his Hegelian period and includes hitherto unpublished notes for a Hegelian philosophy of science. He deals next with the two-fold revolution involved with his abandonment of idealism and adoption of a mathematical logic founded upon that of Peano. After two chapters on Principia Mathematica, he passes to the problems of perception as dealt with in Our Knowledge of the External World. There is a chapter on ‘The Impact of Wittgenstein’ in which he examines what he now thinks must be accepted and what rejected in that philosopher’s work. He notes the changes from earlier theories required by the adoption of William James’s view that sensation is not essentially relational and is not per se a form of knowledge. In an explanatory chapter, he endeavours to remove misconceptions of and objections to his theories as to the relation of perception to scientific knowledge. The book concludes with a reprint of some articles on modern Oxford philosophy.

It is republished by Spokesman Books[2] (2008).


  1. ^ Smith, T. V. (1959), "My Philosophical Development by Bertrand Russell", Ethics, 70 (1): 93–94, doi:10.1086/291259, JSTOR 2379632 .
  2. ^ Publisher's web site, retrieved 2014-05-11.