Monday, 25 March 2019

Iris Murdoch - Silly like us.


Did her gift survive it all? Her personal claim that she was Irish was a twee excursion into the Celtic Twilight. An Post want to claim her with its philosophy on a post card campaign. That should be ample space. Daily Nous has the details:
charming project

I read a lot of her novels many years ago but if you put a gun to my head and said tell us in your own words, in broad outlines, the plot of any of them; I would have to say, ‘Is it about Oxbridge people crossed in love ruminating?
- Sorry I can’t accept that, boom.

One of her books with ‘philosophy’ in the title - The Philosopher’s Pupil has been lying around for years now so I took down it because of the year that’s in it. I read several pages, obviously readable because I read them but it was not a pleasant experience. Cadence was entirely lame, broken, dragging, abrupt with uncouth metaphors and inapt similes. It was published in 1983. Was this a manifestation of the beginning of the loss of her wits? Her previous book published in 1978 The Sea, the Sea won the Booker Prize and I remember reading it before but no – shoot, dam your eyes.

I’m only a little way in and I can tell tell her style has a dwelling quality that creates a body under the surface of description. Yes, yes I know I’m moving close to the rocks of Heideggerian pseudology. I’ll get my coat. More on the book and the topic of cadence later.

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