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November 27 , 2008

The Collected Papers of Bertrand Russell, Volume 5

Toward Principia Mathematica, 1905–08


This volume of Bertrand Russell's Collected Papers finds Russell focused on writing Principia Mathematica during 1905–08. Eight previously unpublished papers shed light on his different versions of a substitutional theory of logic, with its elimination of classes and relations, during 1905-06. A recurring issue for him was whether a type hierarchy had to be part of a substitutional theory. In mid-1907 he began writing up the final version of Principia, now using a ramified theory of types, and eleven unpublished drafts from 1907-08 deal with this. Numerous letters show his thoughts on the process.

The volume's 80-page introduction covers the evolution of his logic from 1896 until 1909, when volume I of Principia went to the printer.

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