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Iris Murdoch, Gender and Philosophy
 
 

Iris Murdoch, Gender and Philosophy [Kindle Edition]

Sabina Lovibond
2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Review

"In this admirable study, Sabina Lovibond examines some of the most interesting and yet neglected aspects of Iris Murdoch’s philosophy, such as gender and sexual equality. Drawing on Murdoch’s novels and philosophical essays, this is a remarkably lively and enjoyable reading." - Carla Bagnoli, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA

"In the context of contemporary philosophy, where Murdoch's work is either neglected or treated with reverence, this critical interest is more than welcome. Lovibond's book is also sharp, well-written and exposes a serious, urgent real-life interest in its theoretical subject matter." – Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

"In a detailed analysis of Iris Murdoch's novels, viewed in relation to her moral philosophy, Lovibond opens a space of reflection on the question of what philosophy can be, and what place women (still underrepresented) might have in the discipline and, more generally, as public intellectuals. ... Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-level undergraduates and above." - CHOICE

 

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The first thorough exploration of Murdoch and gender, Iris Murdoch, Gender and Philosophy is a fresh contribution to debates in feminist philosophy and gender studies, and essential reading for anyone interested in Murdoch's literary and philosophical writing.


Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1964 KB
  • Print Length: 161 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 4 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: Routledge (15 April 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004YZQW2M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #947,511 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Lovibond points out that unjust things often happen to women in Iris Murdoch's novels. To explain that fact as an indication not of realism but of authorial `malaise', Lovibond's argues that misogyny animates Murdoch's philosophy, too. Thus: if misogyny underlies the philosophy, then misogyny can explain the unhappy fate of women in the novels. So it is fatal to Lovibond's general argument that her treatment of Murdoch's philosophical writings proves to be dismissive, careless, even wildly inaccurate. Lest it be thought that Lovibond's political purpose mitigates these offences, it is important to point out that Lovibond's treatment of Iris Murdoch collaborates with exactly the gender myth it purports to challenge. Not least because she directs more attention and wordage at Murdoch's more mythically `feminine' achievement in the novels, Lovibond has little time for the important details of Murdoch's philosophical thought.

Throughout, Lovibond explicitly borrows Nietzsche's lines both on Gender and on the supposed content of 'Platonism'. In this regurgitation Lovibond overlooks all that is interesting about Murdoch's work whilst also failing to consider Murdoch's direct commentary on Nietzsche.

Redacted from a 8000 word critical notice in The Heythrop Journal: Volume 52, Issue 6, pages 1021-1031, November 2011
'IS IRIS MURDOCH AN UNCONSCIOUS MISOGYNIST? SOME TROUBLE WITH SABINE LOVIBOND, THE MOTHER IN LAW, AND GENDER'

For corroborating opinions see Nora Hämäläinen's notice at Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews, John Kekes' review in Philosophy, July 2012, and Bridget Clarke's review in Philosophy In Review 2012 (32:5). I am not as yet aware of any review treating this book as a serious contribution on Iris Murdoch's philosophy.
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