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The Virtues of Metaphysics: A Review of Iris Murdoch's Philosophical Writings

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Iris Murdoch's moral philosophy has long influenced contemporary ethics, yet it has not, in general, received the kind of sustained critical attention that it deserves. Existentialists and Mystics and Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals provide new access to most of Murdoch's philosophical writings and make possible a deeper appreciation of her contribution to current thought. After assessing the recent critical reception of Murdoch's thought, this review places her moral philosophy in the context of contemporary trends in ethics by tracing her influence on the work of Charles Taylor, highlights the distinctive features of her moral philosophy (especially her analysis of consciousness), and suggests future directions for Murdochian ethics.
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Keywords: consciousness; empiricism; imagination; metaphysics; moral psychology

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2001-06-01

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