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RUSSELL, Bertrand, & Lewis F. Richardson.

Mathematical Psychology of War.

Dedicated to my Comrades of the motor ambulance convoy known as S. S. Anglaise 13, in whose company this essay was mainly written.

Oxford: Wm. Hunt, 1919 Stock Code: 135563
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"Mr. Richardson's main ideas appear to me true, original, and important" (Russell)

First edition of Richardson's first and pioneering paper on the subject, containing Russell's 20-line contribution, "Problem: To Produce in Two Nations a Mutual Will to War" (pp. 15-16). It was published at the author's own expense, costing him 35 for 300 copies total. In this fifty-page essay the mathematician and pacifist Lewis Fry Richardson (1881-1953) developed a mathematical model for describing the change in animosity between two opposing sides during a war and "postulated that the rate of increase of the warlike activity of one nation depended on the current activity of the opposing nation" (ODNB). "Russell had been impressed with the manuscript which Stanley Unwin had forwarded him, although he thought that Richardson's subject required a more extended treatment and that he should 'eliminate dogmatic statements of his metaphysical opinions where they are irrelevant'. But, otherwise, 'Mr. Richardson's main ideas appear to me true, original, and important' (29 December 1918). Russell's 'Problem' was enclosed with this letter to Unwin with instructions that it be passed on to the author 'for his amusement'" (Rempel & Haslam, p. 405).

Loosely inserted is a clipping from The Friend of April 7, 1961, reviewing the posthumous publication of two volumes of Richardson's works; Arms and Insecurity and Statistics of deadly Quarrels.

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Quarto. Roneo typescript, pp. [3], 50. Original dark blue cloth-backed blue buckram boards, printed paper label to front board.


Ownership inscription dated 1919 to front pastedown, with a typed letter signed loosely inserted returning the book to him. Spine ends worn and corners lightly rubbed


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