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About the book
  • Published: 3 May 2002
  • ISBN: 9780099285335
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 464
  • RRP: $19.99

A Fairly Honourable Defeat

Vintage Classics Murdoch Series




Iris Murdoch's comic tale of moral dilemmas – now republished as part of the Vintage Classics Murdoch Series – six gorgeous editions of her best, funniest and most subversive novels published to mark her centenary.

In this dark comedy of errors, Iris Murdoch portrays the mischief wrought by Julius, a cynical intellectual who decides to demonstrate through a Machiavellian experiment how easily loving couples, caring friends, and devoted siblings can betray their loyalties. As puppet master, Julius artfully plays on the human tendency to embrace drama and intrigue and to prefer the distraction of confrontations to the difficult effort of communicating openly and honestly.

  • Pub date: 3 May 2002
  • ISBN: 9780099285335
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 464
  • RRP: $19.99

About the Author

Iris Murdoch

Iris Murdoch was born in Dublin in 1919. She read Classics at Somerville College, Oxford, and after working in the Treasury and abroad, was awarded a research studentship in philosophy at Newnham College, Cambridge. In 1948 she returned to Oxford as fellow and tutor at St Anne’s College and later taught at the Royal College of Art. Until her death in 1999, she lived in Oxford with her husband, the academic and critic, John Bayley. She was made a Dame of the British Empire in 1987 and in the 1997 PEN Awards received the Gold Pen for Distinguished Service to Literature.

Iris Murdoch made her writing debut in 1954 with Under the Net. Her twenty-six novels include the Booker prize-winning The Sea, The Sea (1978), the James Tait Black Memorial prize-winning The Black Prince (1973) and the Whitbread prize-winning The Sacred and Profane Love Machine (1974). Her philosophy includes Sartre: Romantic Rationalist (1953) and Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals (1992); other philosophical writings, including The Sovereignty of Good (1970), are collected in Existentialists and Mystics (1997).

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