Chapter

Interpreting Philosophy Into Practical Life

Maria Antonaccio

in A Philosophy to Live By

Published in print July 2012 | ISBN: 9780199855575
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199933198 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199855575.003.0001
Interpreting Philosophy Into Practical Life

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This chapter sets the stage for the inquiry pursued in this book. It begins by reviewing the changing fortunes of Murdoch’s reputation in the period following her death in 1999 and considers the effects of the biographies and memoirs on the recent critical reception of her work. The chapter then goes on to explain the purposes of the present volume, noting both the continuities and the discontinuities with my earlier monograph, Picturing the Human: The Moral Thought of Iris Murdoch. The central claim of this chapter (and the book as a whole) is that Murdoch’s philosophy makes a distinctive contribution to contemporary thought by developing a form of thinking that is neither exclusively secular nor traditionally religious. This mode of thinking is best captured by describing Murdoch’s philosophy as a reappropriation of ancient forms of askesis or spiritual exercises for contemporary life.

Keywords: iris Murdoch; spiritual exercises; askesis; art; imagination; the good

Chapter.  9090 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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