Moral Vision: Iris Murdoch and Alasdair Maclntyre [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Journal of Business Ethics 90 (S3):315 - 327 (2009)
This article explains Iris Murdoch’s notion of moral vision and its importance as a basic concept within applied ethics. It does so by exploring the influence of Iris Murdoch upon Alasdair MacIntyre whose ideas are frequently discussed by business ethicists. Arguably, the British philosopher Iris Murdoch (1919–1999) who wrote – amongst others – Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals ( 1992 ), along with her contemporaries, Philippa Foot and Elizabeth Anscombe, pioneered the resurgence of Aristotle’s virtue ethics. Furthermore, Iris Murdoch influenced Alasdair MacIntyre. Heather Widdows, in her biography of Iris Murdoch lists Alasdair MacIntyre amongst those ‘thinkers she inspired’ (Widdows, The moral vision of Iris Murdoch, Ashgate Publishing, Aldershot, 2005 , p. 10). And in his writings MacIntyre does both examine Murdoch’s work and acknowledge that ‘Iris Murdoch has … put us all in her debt’ (MacIntyre, 1993 , The New York Times on the Web , January 3, http://www.nytimes.com/books/98/12/20/specials/murdoch-metaphysics.html , p. 3). Murdoch was both an influential philosopher and a successful novelist. MacIntyre has stated that ‘Iris Murdoch’s novels are philosophy: but they are philosophy which casts doubt on all philosophy, including her own’ ( London Review of Books , 3–16 June, 1982 , p. 15). I therefore explore in this article the influence of Iris Murdoch’s literary work, where ‘true vision occasions right conduct’ upon Alasdair MacIntyre’s portrayal of us as ‘storytelling animals’ on a ‘narrative quest’.
|Keywords||ethics MacIntyre Murdoch novel philosophy storytelling|
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References found in this work BETA
Alasdair C. MacIntyre (2007). After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory. University of Notre Dame Press.
Alasdair MacIntyre (1988). Whose Justice? Which Rationality? University of Notre Dame Press.
Deirdre N. McCloskey (2006). The Bourgeois Virtues: Ethics for an Age of Commerce. University of Chicago Press.
Iris Murdoch (1970/1971). The Sovereignty of Good. New York,Schocken Books.
Iris Murdoch (1993). Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals. Allen Lane, Penguin Press.
Citations of this work BETA
Catherine Marsh (2013). Business Executives' Perceptions of Ethical Leadership and Its Development. Journal of Business Ethics 114 (3):565-582.
Ming Shan, Albert P. C. Chan, Yun Le & Yi Hu (2015). Investigating the Effectiveness of Response Strategies for Vulnerabilities to Corruption in the Chinese Public Construction Sector. Science and Engineering Ethics 21 (3):683-705.
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