Perceptions of reality : the effects of aesthetics and moral philosophy on characterization in the novels of Iris Murdoch

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dc.contributor.advisor Jennings, C. Wade en_US Bove, Cheryl Browning, 1944- en_US 2011-06-03T19:23:25Z 2011-06-03T19:23:25Z 1984 en_US 1984
dc.identifier LD2489.Z68 1984 .B6 en_US
dc.description.abstract Iris Murdoch believes she writes in the English realist tradition and cites the creation of real characters as the main problem which confronts the modern novelist. Yet her own characterization, which this work explores (in relation to her aesthetics and moral philosophy) provides her greatest contribution to the development of the novel.An understanding of Murdoch's concept of characterization requires a knowledge of her philosophical heritage, its metaphysics, and consideration of the resulting theory of man with his capacity for reason, for communication, and for approaching truth. Accordingly, chapter I of this work introduces the critical writings which provide the theoretical background for Murdoch's characterization.Chapter II examines the factors which influence man's consciousness, thus establishing the difficulty which the change of consciousness proposed by Murdoch for moral development presents. These factors include the contingency of life, the loss of common religious background, man's historic past, and the inadequacy of language for communication.Chapter III considers the elements denoting man's moral status and development, as revealed through characterization, and concludes that Murdoch's characters reveal a degree of vision consistent with their moral status. Included here are characters from the twenty-one Murdoch novels who display six different levels of spiritual awareness: the Good, the nearly Good, the nice, the mediocre with knowledge, the fat egoists, and the black figures.Chapter IV considers the treatment of aesthetics and its relationship to moral philosophy within three novels which discuss writing, portrait painting, and the theatre at length: The Black Prince, The Sandcastle, and The Sea, The Sea.Finally, three appendices are intended to serve as useful sources for both Murdoch readers and scholars. Appendix A contains the bibliography of primary sources and some two hundred critical works about Murdoch's writing; Appendix B is a subject index for the topics common to the sources in the bibliography; Appendix C-is an annotated character index and guide for the twenty-one Murdoch novels to date. en_US
dc.format.extent vii, 446 leaves ; 28 cm. en_US
dc.source Virtual Press en_US
dc.subject.other Murdoch, Iris -- Criticism and interpretation. en_US
dc.title Perceptions of reality : the effects of aesthetics and moral philosophy on characterization in the novels of Iris Murdoch en_US
dc.type Includes index. en_US Thesis (Ph. D.) en_US
dc.identifier.cardcat-url en_US

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  • Doctoral Dissertations [3248]
    Doctoral dissertations submitted to the Graduate School by Ball State University doctoral candidates in partial fulfillment of degree requirements.

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