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Iris Murdoch (Writers and Their Work)

by Anne Rowe

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Iris Murdoch was both a popular and intellectually serious novelist, whose writing life spanned the latter half of the twentieth century. A proudly Anglo-Irish writer who produced twenty-six best-selling novels, she was also a respected philosopher, a theological thinker and an outspoken public intellectual. This thematically based study outlines the overarching themes that characterise her fiction decade by decade, explores her unique role as a British philosopher-novelist, explains the paradoxical nature of her outspoken atheism and highlights the neglected aesthetic aspect of her fiction, which innovatively extended the boundaries of realist fiction. While Iris Murdoch is acknowledged here as a writer who vividly evokes the zeitgeist of the late twentieth century, she is also presented as a figure whose unconventional life and complex presentation of gender and psychology has immense resonance for twenty-first-century readers.… (more)
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Iris Murdoch was both a popular and intellectually serious novelist, whose writing life spanned the latter half of the twentieth century. A proudly Anglo-Irish writer who produced twenty-six best-selling novels, she was also a respected philosopher, a theological thinker and an outspoken public intellectual. This thematically based study outlines the overarching themes that characterise her fiction decade by decade, explores her unique role as a British philosopher-novelist, explains the paradoxical nature of her outspoken atheism and highlights the neglected aesthetic aspect of her fiction, which innovatively extended the boundaries of realist fiction. While Iris Murdoch is acknowledged here as a writer who vividly evokes the zeitgeist of the late twentieth century, she is also presented as a figure whose unconventional life and complex presentation of gender and psychology has immense resonance for twenty-first-century readers.

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