[SydPhil] Notification: Kathryn McKay @ Thu 12 Mar 2020 15:00 - 16:30 (AEDT) (Current Projects)

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Wed Mar 11 15:00:14 AEDT 2020

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Title: Kathryn McKay
Lacking the Will to be Good – Iris Murdoch and Aristotle on Virtue

Iris Murdoch was a self-described Platonist, but in this paper I will draw  
on similarities between her theory of virtue and Aristotle’s, to bring  
Murdoch’s work into conversation with contemporary (neo-Aristotelian)  
virtue ethics and, if all goes to plan, the (meta)ethics of care. By  
focussing on three aspects of Murdoch’s philosophy, I hope to elucidate the  
ways in which her work can be positioned as a link between these two moral  
theories. I begin with a discussion of the role the will plays – or doesn’t  
play – in being good from Murdoch’s and Aristotle’s perspectives. I then  
discuss the importance of love and the central role of attention in moral  
life. Both Murdoch’s Platonism and her focus on the mystical can be a  
source of scholarly discomfort (cf Broakes 2012: Murdoch’s mysticism must  
be “grounded, deflated, and rendered innocent” p. 30). Rather than  
‘deflate’ or denude these aspects of her thought, I will try to incorporate  
or develop them. Murdoch’s focus on beauty in nature (and art), experiences  
of the sublime, and the ego-rending experience of love are all central to  
her view of being good. According to Murdoch, and as we find in Aristotle,  
being good is not established by a discrete decision made at a particular  
time, but in a habitual way of perceiving the real world and acting upon  
those perceptions. Being good is not a matter of will, but of vision.
When: Thu 12 Mar 2020 15:00 – 16:30 Eastern Australia Time - Sydney
Calendar: Current Projects
     * kristiemiller4 at gmail.com- creator

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