The first page of the corrected typescript of PIRA

The first page of the corrected typescript of ‘Political Ideas in the Romantic Age’
(click on image to enlarge)

This catalogue includes items (except for interviews and letters) unpublished by 1990, when full-time work on publication of Berlin’s Nachlaß began. Items published since then are linked to the bibliography; there are also other links, e.g. to the catalogue of broadcasts). Most remaining items will be posted on this site in PDF form: a link to the text is provided when this has been done. Please note that these texts have not all been brought to publishable standard, only tidied up so that they are easy to read. Note also that these texts are in copyright, and must not be published without permission. Items are listed in chronological order within sections, where their date is known; undated items are listed in alphabetical order at the end of the relevant section. All items have been transcribed and edited, unless otherwise stated. A word-count appears at the end of most entries.

Unpublished writings

Lecture series

1‘Political Ideas in the Romantic Age: Their Rise and Influence on Modern Thought’

Typescripts drafted in preparation for the Mary Flexner Lectures, Bryn Mawr College, Pennsylvania, 1952; heavily revised thereafter; introduction written subsequently; published 2006. 111,127.

2‘Freedom and its Betrayal’

Third Programme, 1952; published 2002, the fiftieth anniversary of the delivery of the lectures. 60,642.

3‘The Roots of Romanticism’

The A. W. Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts, 1965, The National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, 1965; published 1999.  60,812.

4‘Three Turning-Points in Political Thought’

Storrs Lectures, Yale, 1962; first lecture published 2002. 35,840.

5‘Two Enemies of the Enlightenment’

Woodbridge Lectures, Columbia University, New York, 25–8 October 1965; listen to recordings of the surviving lectures

6‘The Assault on the French Enlightenment’

John Danz Lectures, University of Washington, 22, 24 and 25 February 1971. 35,554.

7‘The Origins of Cultural History’

Gauss Seminars, Princeton, 1973. 36,698.

8 As yet unidentified BBC lectures


Individual lectures, talks, addresses etc.

9 ‘Can the divergence of ethical judgements be reconciled with the existence of an absolute standard of morality?’

Undergraduate essay? 2,123.


Talk to a philosophical society – mid-1930s? 8,630.

11 ‘The Refutation of Phenomenalism’

A draft of section I of ‘Empirical Propositions and Hypothetical Statements’. 1,898.


2 lectures in Balliol Hall, 22 and 24 January 1934 16,303.


Moral Sciences Club, Cambridge, 28 February 1936 11,345. Cf. L 177/1.

14 ‘Introduction: Induction and Logic’

Lectures in in a mixture of (mainly) prose and full notes, Hilary Term 1940. 32,450.

15 ‘Why the Soviet Union Chooses to Insulate Itself

Royal Institute of International Affairs, 1946. 4,145.


Review of David Footman, The Primrose Path, Third Programme, 1946. 2,967.

17 ‘Berkeley’s Theory of the External World’

Lectures in a mixture of (mainly) prose and full notes, Hilary Term 1947. 21,405.

18‘Karl Marx’s Philosophy’

Late 1940s? 8,705.

19 ‘Democracy, Communism and the Individual’

Summary by IB of his talk at Mount Holyoke College, 1949. 2,227.

20 ‘Summary of Mr Berlin’s Speech’

Summary by an unknown hand of an unidentified speech, ?1949. 1,073.

21‘ “Don Giovanni” at Aix-en-Provence’

Third Programme, 1950. 2,565.

22‘Synthetic A Priori Propositions’

Reply to Sellars, APA, Bryn Mawr, 1951. 3,228.

23‘Marxist versus Non-Marxist Ideas in Soviet Policy’

Haverford College, Pennsylvania, 1952; includes question period. 11,993 (lecture 6,057).

24‘The Sense of Reality’

Basis for the first Elizabeth Cutter Morrow Lecture, Smith College, USA, 1953. 16,913.

25‘Philosophy and Government Repression’

Scheduled for 1954; not delivered. 9,514.

26‘The Impact of Israel’

Lecture to COJO, June 1955 (see Jewish Chronicle, 24 June 1955, 5, 13–14, 22). 3,258.

27‘Political Judgement’

Third Programme, 1957. 5,526.

28‘National Superiority and Inferiority’

Talk and discussion, Home Service, 1958. 8,060.

29‘The Search for Status’

Last of four talks based on ‘Two Concepts of Liberty’. BBC European Service, 1959. 1,770.

30‘Tolstoy on the Relation of Educated Men to the Masses’

Largely an early draft of ‘Tolstoy and Enlightenment’, so 1960?  5,192.

31‘The Philosophy of History’

BBC All India Radio, 1961. 2,882.

32‘Rabindranath Tagore and the Consciousness of Nationality’

India, 1961. 7,264.


Short radio talk for India, 1961. 722.

34‘The Addiction of Russian Intellectuals to Historicism’

Talk and discussion, Russian Research Center, Harvard, 1962. 20,597.

35‘Artistic Commitment: A Russian Legacy’

Revised version (occasion and date of use unknown) of talk first given before President Kennedy on 12 December 1962.

36‘Romanticism, Politics and Ethics’

Keller Lecture, West Hartford, Connecticut, 1963. 11,134.

37‘Marxism and the International in the Nineteenth Century’

Typescript drafted in preparation for lecture at Stanford, 1964; heavily revised thereafter. 21,446.

38‘The Impact of Marxism in the Nineteenth Century’

The previous item as delivered. 12,564.

39‘The Lessons of History’

Summary by IB of talk on unknown occasion, c.1965. 6,109.

40‘The Morality of Scholarship’

Reply to Northrop Frye, Modern Language Association, 1966.  2,351.

41‘The Romantic Movement in Europe’

For schools, Home Service, 1967. 3,319.

42‘Turgenev and the Liberal Predicament’

Lecture at the at the Cambridge Union, 1969; only partly a precursor of the Romanes Lecture.  16,239.


Italian Institute, 1969. 10,147.

44‘The Origins of Modern Irrationalism in the Last Two Centuries’

Benjamin Rush Lecture, American Psychiatric Association, 4 May 1971, Washington, DC.

45‘Roots of Romanticism’

Interview with Graham Martin, Radio 4 (Open University), 1972. 3,515.

46‘Tolstoy’s View of Art and Morality’

Open University, Radio 4, 1973. 5,712.

47‘The Russian Preoccupation with History’

Radio 3, 1974. 8,034.

48‘Some Opponents of the Enlightenment’

Wolfson College, Oxford, 11 February 1975, in the series ‘The Enlightenment and Its Critics’ (The Wolfson College Lectures for 1975). 10,657.

49 ‘The Achievement of Zionism’

Institute of Jewish Affairs, 1975. 3,764.

50‘The End of the Ideal of the Perfect Society’

University of New South Wales, 1975. 11,071.

50a‘Nationalism: Its Rise and Unforeseen Career’

Lionel Trilling Seminar, Columbia University, 7 April 1977; published 1978.

51‘Vico, Voltaire and the Beginnings of Cultural History’

University of Adelaide, 1975. 10,967.

52‘The Reputation of Vico’

Review of Peter Burke’s Vico in the OUP Past Masters series (1985). Date unknown. Published 1999. 1,607.

53‘Recollections of Yitzhak Sadeh’

Israel Radio, 1986. 2,483. Incorporated in bibliography item 214.

54‘Yitzhak Sadeh’

HH’s combined version of preceding two items.

55‘A Philosophical Source of the Idea of National Freedom’

1st Humayun Kabir Memorial Lecture, 1972. 8,081.

56‘Yitzhak Sadeh’

Date unknown. Incorporated in bibliography item 214. 3,937.

57‘The Romantic Revolution: A Crisis in the History of Modern Thought?’

Delivered in Rome in Italian in March 1960. 10,538.

58Acceptance Speech at Degree Ceremony in Toronto, 24 November 1994


59‘The Social Responsibility of the Artist’

Modern Language Association, date unknown. 5,234.

60‘Vissarion Belinsky’

Lecture at Cambridge[?], date unknown. 16,051.


61‘The Brains Trust’

BBC TV, 1958. 6,797.


Discussions chaired by Stuart Hampshire, Third Programme, 1961–2. 28,268.


Interview with Bamber Gascoigne, ATV, 1962.  493.

64‘Conversations for Tomorrow’

‘After-dinner talk’ with J B Priestley and A J Ayer, BBC TV, 1964. 5,876.

65‘John F. Kennedy’

Interview with Arthur M Schlesinger, Jr, Washington, 1965.  12,520.

66‘ “I’m going to tamper with your beliefs a little” ’

Filmed dialogue with Stuart Hampshire on J. L. Austin and Oxford Philosophy, 1972. 10,344.

67‘The Problem of Nationalism’

Interview with Bryan Magee and Stuart Hampshire, ITV, 1972. 9,286.

68‘Equality, Liberty and Variety’

Interview with John Vaizey, Radio 3, 1974. 6,296.

69‘Romanticism, Liberation and Social Change’

Conversations with Roy Pascal, 1974. 7,881.


TV interview with Peter Jay, LWT, 1975. 10,521.

71‘Mill: The Manifold’

Discussion with Alan Ryan, Radio 3, 1976. 3,208.

72Review of V. S. Pritchett, The Gentle Barbarian

Kaleidoscope interview, Radio 4, 1977. 915.

73Interview on Russian Thinkers and Concepts and Categories

Belgian radio, February 1979. Published 1980. 10,032.

74‘Personal Impressions’

Kaleidoscope interview, Radio 4, 1980. 1,042.

75‘The Levin Interview’

BBC2 Television, 1981. 5,613.

76‘Not a Place for Happiness at All: A Portrait of Lewis Namier’

Interview, Radio 3, 1982.  1,064.

77‘Stravinsky: Man of Masks’

Interview with Michael Berkeley, Radio 3, 1982. 1,307.

77aNahum Goldmann Cultural Medal Acceptance Speech

World Jewish Congress, Jerusalem, 28 January 1986. 2,427.

78‘In conversation with John Drummond’

Radio 3, 1991. 8,134.

79‘The Late Show’

Interview with Michael Ignatieff, BBC2 Television, 1992. 6,022.

80‘Nationalism: The Melting-Pot Myth’

Interview with Bryan Magee, Radio 3, 1992. 3,189.

81‘Desert Island Discs’

Interview with Sue Lawley, Radio 4, 1992. 5,159.

82Out-takes from previous item


83Classic FM interview with Susannah Simons

1993. 1,730.

84‘Isaiah Berlin: A Portrait’

Interview for Swiss radio, 1993. 908.

85‘The Third Programme’

Interview with Humphrey Carpenter. 9,542.

86‘The Kreutzer Sonata’

Interview with Humphrey Carpenter, Radio 3, 1996 (broadcast extracts from previous item). 1,132.

87‘Private Passions’

Interview with Michael Berkeley, Radio 3, 1996. 2,973.

88‘Joseph Brodsky’

Contribution to documentary, 1996. 84.

Other items

89‘The Purpose Justifies the Ways’

Childhood story, 1922. 1,750.

‘M. Henri Heine’

Poem, 1928. 151.

90‘Literature and the Crisis’

Rejected by London Mercury, 1930s. 3,380.

91 ‘The State of Psychology in 1936’

Report for All Souls College, Oxford, on the possible appointment of a psychologist. Published 2001. 3,924.

92Unpublished portions of the original text of Karl Marx (1939)

Now transcribed and posted.

93‘A Note on Literature and the Arts in the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic in the Closing Months of 1945’

Foreign Office despatch, 1945. Published in full 2004. 9,708.

94‘Some Political Events of 1951’

Unpublished contribution to Britannica Book of the Year 1952. 3,735.

95‘Note on Subjective versus Objective Ethics’

Appendix to what? Date unknown – 1950s? Published in PIRA 2006. 2,201.

96 ‘Four Weeks in the Soviet Union’

Account of visit in 1956; corrected by IB 1991. Published 2004. 3,837.

97 ‘Boris Pasternak’

Occasion unknown, but perhaps at the time Dr Zhivago appeared in English (1957); at any rate before Pasternak’s death in 1960. Published 2004. 1,674.

98‘President Wilson on Education’

1959; written for, but not published in, a book – Education in the Nation’s Service. Published 2004. 5,673.

99Foreword to Andrey Bely, St Petersburg

1959; written for, but not published in, the edition of the novel translated by John Cournos (London, 1960: Weidenfeld); the introduction commissioned from George Adamovich, to which the Foreword refers, was dropped. 231.

100 ‘Bernard Berenson’

Letter intended for publication, not sent, 1961. Published 2004. 752.


Draft for 1962 ATV interview on freedom; revised as entry in Oxford Companion to Philosophy, and included in L. 1,559.

102The Magus of the North: J. G. Hamann and the Origins of Modern Irrationalism

Book reconstructed from 1960s material, published 1993. 44,378.

103‘Russian “Philosophy” ’, review of Russian Philosophy, ed. James M. Edie and others

Uncorrected transcript – 1965. 2,506.

104‘Man of Action’

Choice of records, Radio 3, 1974. 1,808.

105‘Notes on Liberty and Democracy’

Occasion unknown – 1981? 1,361.

106Foreword to Alexander Herzen, Who Is to Blame?, trans. Michael R. Katz (Ithaca, 1984: Cornell University Press)

Not included in published volume.

107‘Dodds and his Autobiography’

Speech for prize presentation?  Date unknown. 772.

108Entry on his work for Penguin dictionary of philosophy


109Tribute to Giorgio Tagliacozzo

110Tribute to Reinhold Niebuhr

Citation of online documents

Citations of documents posted in the IBVL should take this form:

Isaiah Berlin, ‘Matter’ (1934), nachlass/matter.pdf, in Henry Hardy (ed.), The Isaiah Berlin Virtual Library (accessed 6 July 2021)