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Bertrand Russell Visiting Professorship

McMaster University, which houses the Bertrand Russell Archives and the Bertrand Russell Research Centre, is one of the leading centres for research on Russell’s philosophy. As part of our continuing efforts to support the research of Russell academics both at home and abroad, McMaster initiated the Bertrand Russell Visiting Professorships, in 2007.

Each year the Department of Philosophy invites applications for a visiting professor in Russell and the History of Early Analytic Philosophy. The intention is to host scholars whose research would be benefited by access to the Bertrand Russell Archives for an extended period. Each scholar also highlights their own research through Philosophy Speaker Series and engages with graduate students through a graduate seminar in Russell and Analytic Philosophy.


2019-2020 Visiting Professor: Aaron Preston

As the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar, Dr. Preston work on two projects; “Personalism: its demise, and the prospects for resurrection”, and “The Abdication of Philososphy”.  He also taught a graduate course on “The Abdication of Philosophy:
Metaphilosophy and Moral Philosophy in the 20th Century”.





2019-2018 Visiting Professor: N/A
2017-2018 Visiting Professor: Dustin Olson
As the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar, Dr. Olson undertook three nascent research projects and completed a handful of works in progress. The nascent projects considered: (I) Russell’s role as a scientific philosopher in light of the contemporary naturalistic turn in metaphysics and epistemology; (II) common misconceptions concerning Russell’s epistemology; and (III) the origins and applications of the method of inquiry referred to as “reflective equilibrium”.

2016-2017 Visiting Professor: Erich Reck

While visiting McMaster University as the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar, Dr. Reck completed a collection of essays entitled Frege, Dedekind, and their Legacies: Essays in the History and Philosophy of Mathematics. The collection compares Gottlob Frege’s and Richard Dedekind’s contributions to the foundations of mathematics, with a particular emphasis on the concept of number, underlying conceptions of logic, and the mathematical/philosophical methodologies employed by each thinker.

2015-2016 Visiting Professor: Jeremy Heis

Dr. Heis’ research as the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar concerned the development of Russell’s early (1897-1903) views on geometry and the emergence of his logicism. The first of two research projects investigated Russell’s relation to the German logician Hermann Lotze, while the second focused on Russell’s 1898 appropriation of ideas from A.N. Whitehead’s Treatise on Universal Algebra.

2014-2015 Visiting Professor: Fraser MacBride

During his time as the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar, Dr. Macbride completed a monograph for Oxford University Press, On the Genealogy of Universals, which concerns the development of analytic philosophy during its first quarter century. The monograph tracks the manner in which the concepts of “particular” and “universal” were initially countenanced, transfigured and subsequently given up by the early analytic philosophers.

2013-2014 Visiting Professor: Jolen Galaugher

Dr. Galaugher’s research project as the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar focused on Russell’s correspondence with the French logician, Louis Couturat, between the years of 1897 and 1913. Alongside the first English translation of the correspondence, Dr. Galaugher offers a sustained commentary on the significance of the correspondence in order to appreciate primary philosophical developments in Russell’s logic.

2012-2013 Visiting Professor: Russell Wahl

Dr. Wahl’s focus as the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar concerned the expansion of Russell’s method of analysis to include the broad area of epistemology and philosophy of science, during the years 1912 to 1940. More specifically, he was interested in Russell’s changing views on acquaintance, sense data, and logical constructions.

2011-2012 Visiting Professor: Nikolay Milkov

Dr. Milkov’s time as the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar saw him elaborate on the intellectual relationship between Bertrand Russell and his student, Ludwig Wittgenstein. He also dedicated time to Russell’s socio-political thought. The research culminated into two papers which were eventually published under the titles of “Bertrand Russell’s Religious Humanism,” and “The Joint Philosophical Project of Russell and Wittgenstein: April–November 1912”.

2010-2011 Visiting Professor: Arthur Michael Sullivan

As the Bertrand Russell Visiting Scholar, Dr. Sullivan’s research project sought to demonstrate that Russell still provides the foundation for the simplest and most comprehensive theory of reference, which not only accords with but grounds various important points about language and thought. He does so by defending Russell’s conclusion, first noted around 1903, that the notion of structure, properly excavated, underlies and grounds various important points in the theory of reference.
2009-2010 Visiting Professor: N/A

2008-2009 Visiting Professor: N/A


2007-2008 Visiting Professor: Sébastien Gandon