Books: Wrangler's World

THE WISDOM OF THE WEST (320 pp.)—Berfrand Russell—Doubleday ($12.50).

In a prodigious feat of analysis, narrative and condensation, Bertrand Russell has compressed the history of Western philosophy into 320 pages. (In a 1946 volume, he took nearly three times as much space.) As ground bait in the chilling stream of philosophic speculation, the publishers have sprinkled 500 illustrations, half of them in color, through this volume. From Thales (circa 624-546 B.C.), about whom little is known, to Whitehead and Wittgenstein, both of whom the author knew well, Russell tells something of the life as well as the ideas of the hundred-odd philosophers...

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