E–pub Free A Fairly Honourable Defeat BY Iris Murdoch

  • Paperback
  • 432
  • A Fairly Honourable Defeat
  • Iris Murdoch
  • English
  • 08 July 2018
  • 9780141186177

Iris Murdoch ☆ 5 Read & Download

Read & Download A Fairly Honourable Defeat ä PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB free review A Fairly Honourable Defeat Man tendency to embrace drama and intrigue and to prefer the distraction of confrontations to the difficult effort of communicating openly and honestly. This is a tangled web set in the late 60s concerning Rupert and Hilda their 20 year old drop out son Peter Rupert s younger brother Simon and his boyfriend Axel Hilda s unstable younger sister Morgan and her estranged husband Tallis and her former lover and college friend of Rupert and Axel JuliusThings are intertwined from the start but later there are strong echoes of Shakespeare s Midsummer Night s Dream when the stage is set for a non magical enchantment leading to illusions of love and betrayal with the metaphorical puppeteer appearing to soothe whilst actually sowing doubts and creating scenarios Although the story is entirely naturalistic rather than magical realism etc there are occasions when some of the characters think they sense supernatural demons or ghosts yet none of them realise the real power that is manipulating their livesIt opens inauspiciously with a long conversation between Rupert and Hilda which explains the back story but which they would not be discussing in that way between themselves However after that it becomes a trademark Murdoch psychological novel In some ways her protagonists are a little like the British euivalent of Woody Allen s shrink addicted New Yorkers as they endlessly analyse their relationships interconnectedness motives etcThe narrative slips seamlessly between pages of pure dialogue to descriptive passages In some of the dialogue sections it is not always clear who is saying what but that is actually very effective especially when there is a large gathering with multiple conversations and the reader is effectively eaves hopping between themThe book is slightly dated in places especially early on when Murdoch seems embarrassed about the terminology regarding Simon and Axel liaison association his friend and there are a couple of awkward racial comments but mostly it reads very well and would also be good for a reading group though probably too unfashionable to be picked unless it rose to prominence on the back of a film You could spend ages merely on Both you and X are wounded people X is the wounded because X is the guilty and for that reason is probably the proud And Good is dull What novelist ever succeeded in making a good man interesting Fortunately this novel devotes plenty of pages to those who are not goodI d love to read another book about Julius so this one must have been excellent Letters to Chloe year old drop out son Peter Rupert s Ford County younger brother Simon and his boyfriend Axel Hilda s unstable Johannes Cabal the Necromancer younger sister Morgan and her estranged husband Tallis and her former lover and college friend of Rupert and Axel JuliusThings are intertwined from the start but later there are strong echoes of Shakespeare s Midsummer Night s Dream when the stage is set for a non magical enchantment leading to illusions of love and betrayal with the metaphorical puppeteer appearing to soothe whilst actually sowing doubts and creating scenarios Although the story is entirely naturalistic rather than magical realism etc there are occasions when some of the characters think they sense supernatural demons or ghosts Academia Obscura yet none of them realise the real power that is manipulating their livesIt opens inauspiciously with a long conversation between Rupert and Hilda which explains the back story but which they would not be discussing in that way between themselves However after that it becomes a trademark Murdoch psychological novel In some ways her protagonists are a little like the British euivalent of Woody Allen s shrink addicted New Yorkers as they endlessly analyse their relationships interconnectedness motives etcThe narrative slips seamlessly between pages of pure dialogue to descriptive passages In some of the dialogue sections it is not always clear who is saying what but that is actually very effective especially when there is a large gathering with multiple conversations and the reader is effectively eaves hopping between themThe book is slightly dated in places especially early on when Murdoch seems embarrassed about the terminology regarding Simon and Axel liaison association his friend and there are a couple of awkward racial comments but mostly it reads very well and would also be good for a reading group though probably too unfashionable to be picked unless it rose to prominence on the back of a film You could spend ages merely on Both Wide eyed and Legless Inside the Tour De France A Sportspages Book you and X are wounded people X is the wounded because X is the guilty and for that reason is probably the proud And Good is dull What novelist ever succeeded in making a good man interesting Fortunately this novel devotes plenty of pages to those who are not goodI d love to read another book about Julius so this one must have been excellent

review A Fairly Honourable Defeat

A Fairly Honourable Defeat

Read & Download A Fairly Honourable Defeat ä PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB free review A Fairly Honourable Defeat An experiment how easily loving couples caring friends and devoted siblings can betray their loyalties As puppet master Julius artfully plays on the hu. I first read this book in graduate school in the 70 s and I ve re read it several times over the years It may or may not be one of the best books I ve ever read but in some ways it is probably the most powerfulFor many years it was the only Murdoch book I d read but over the past five years I ve picked up others and that altered my reading experience this time I still felt the chilly dread of what the characters were going to encounter next but I was also hit over the head with Murdoch s philosophy in the same way that I did reading Ayn Rand s Atlas Shrugged okay okay I get itThis awareness didn t diminish my interest in this novel or Murdoch s writing but it made me think about how present her voice and her personality are in the book It chills me to consider her cynicism and contempt for people but also intrigues me that in addition to the frightening amoral personalities she creates there is also a seeker and a hopeful belief that love conuers all I haven t decided whether it would have been fascinating or frightening to sit down to dinner with Iris Murdoch at her peak but I am confident it woul have been memorable Perky years It may or may not be one of the best books I ve ever read but in some ways it is probably the most powerfulFor many Rayleigh Through Time years it was the only Murdoch book I d read but over the past five Biggles Flies East years I ve picked up others and that altered my reading experience this time I still felt the chilly dread of what the characters were going to encounter next but I was also hit over the head with Murdoch s philosophy in the same way that I did reading Ayn Rand s Atlas Shrugged okay okay I get itThis awareness didn t diminish my interest in this novel or Murdoch s writing but it made me think about how present her voice and her personality are in the book It chills me to consider her cynicism and contempt for people but also intrigues me that in addition to the frightening amoral personalities she creates there is also a seeker and a hopeful belief that love conuers all I haven t decided whether it would have been fascinating or frightening to sit down to dinner with Iris Murdoch at her peak but I am confident it woul have been memorable

characters Ø PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB free ☆ Iris Murdoch

Read & Download A Fairly Honourable Defeat ä PDF, eBook or Kindle ePUB free review A Fairly Honourable Defeat In a dark comedy of errors Iris Murdoch portrays the mischief wrought by Julius a cynical intellectual who decides to demonstrate through a Machiavelli. Relationships It s ComplicatedTallis loves Morgan but Morgan loves Julius Julius woos Simon but Simon loves Axel Hilda loves Rupert but Rupert covets Morgan Julius wants Hilda but Hilda loves Peter Peter loves Morgan but Morgan loves Rupert Leonard loves nobody because he s an old grinch and the exception to the rule of musical chairs deployed by Murdoch here in her study of love morality and fidelity If the tune sounds familiar it s because I ve spent half an hour on Google trying to identify a song that I kept humming back in the 80 s Turns up it s by a band named Chilly Joey wants Penny but Penny loves Bo Bo isn t ready cos he s havin fun Playin with many is better than none Johnny loves Jenny but Jenny loves Joe I used to love Iris Murdoch but after the rather ponderous and deprimant Dream of Bruno I took a break that turned to last two decades Now I m back and I m glad to report that her books can be not only deep philosophical and provocative but also a lot of fun Rambunctious is not a ualifier that I had occasion to use before but it describes accurately the madcap permutations in the affections of the close knit group of friends and relatives at the center of this story To borrow a title from my next review the book could aptly be named The Disorderly Lovers a commedy of manners that could only be set in England where appearances stiff upper lips and repressed sexuality trump sincerity and trust You are preserving your dignity by refusing to show your feelings But there are moments when love ought to be undignified extravagant even violent says Rupert at one time to Tallis about the latter s failure to convince runaway wife Morgan to come back to himI m getting ahead of the story I should get back and properly introduce the actors before commenting on their foibles Briefly the novel starts with Rupert a high ranking government official and his stay at home wife Hilda celebrating the 20th anniversary of their steady and slightly boring marriage It s one of those elusive hot summer days in London and the couple gossips extensively about their guests as they sample liberaly from the drinks cabinet We learn that Hilda s sister Morgan is expected to return soon from the United States where she had a torrid affair with Julius a former school colleague of Rupert Their son Peter is living out with Morgan s abandoned husband Tallis while Rupert s brother Simon is expected to join them in the company of his significant other Axel another mate from Rupert and Julius school days At this point I recommend a spreadsheet and some colored markers in order to keep track of who is involved with whomTo make it easier I would say the novel is a cross between two literary classics A Midsummer Night Dream by Shakespeare and Les Liaisons Dangereuses by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos I am not ualified to comment in detail on the connections as I am only familiar with the movie versions of these stories but I see Rupert and Hilda as Oberon and Titania around whom the others gravitate Morgan as the Maruise de Merteuil and Julius as the disruptive malicious Puck Vicomte de Valmont This artificiality theatricality is in fact the one major complaint I could level at the novel In order to touch on as many aspects of the subject as possible Murdoch uses a sandbox approach with the characters acting sometimes as puppets whose strings are in their creator s hands and who move in predetermined patterns that puts them in exactly the situation that illustrates best the point Murdoch wants to make With the same goal in mind all the characters are upper class highly educated and introspective able to analyze their emotions and extremely articulate about expressing them What saves the characters as people is the level of detail of Murdoch analysis and the real pain they go through as they try to reach out and touch one another I had some issues with Peter and Simon who are a little too stereotypical in their roles one as a teenager refusing his parents love and the other as the effete promiscuous flashy dresser gay interior decorator Peter Peter do drink something not just water It would do you good What sort of good You people all drink in order to escape from reality I happen to like reality I m staying with it not taking off for the land of make believe Peter again I m afraid nowadays it s you young people who are cynical and we middle aged ones who are idealistic We aren t cynical And you aren t idealistic You re just a lot of self centred habit ridden hedonists Simon Simon was greedy for the surface texture of his life whose substance he luxuriously munched second after second as if it were a fruit with a thin soft furry exterior and a firm sweet fleshy inside Simon loved times of day eating drinking looking touching All his experiences were ceremonies He liked the slow savouring of moments of pleasure and he engineered his life to contain as many of these as possibleIt sometimes seemed to him that all his enjoyments were similar in kind though not in degree whether he was stroking a cat or a Chippendale chair or drinking a dry martini or looking at a picture by Titian or getting into bed with Alex Murdoch most reliable characters for presenting her position on the major themes of the novel are Rupert and Julius Rupert is actually writing a philosophical book about the power of love and positive thinking Julius thinks Rupert is conceited and misguided and sets up to demonstrate that his own cynical approach to love is closer to reality Rupert Love is the last and secret name of all the virtues Julius All human beings fly from consciousness Drink Love Art are methods of flight Philosophy is another one perhaps the subtlest of them all Even subtler than theology One can attempt to be truthful Julius The attempt has meaning About these things no The Venerable Bede observed that human life was like a sparrow that flies through a lighted hall in one door and out the other What can that poor sparrow know Nothing These attempted truths are tisues of illusion Theories Julius again Human beings are roughly constructed entities full of indeterminacies and vagueness and empty spaces Driven along by their own private needs they latch blindly onto each other then pull away then latch again Their little sadisms and their little masochisms are surface phenomena Anyone will do to play their roles They never really see each other at all There is no relationship dear Morgan which cannot uite easily be broken and there is none the breaking of which is a matter of any genuine seriousness Human beings are essentially finders of substitutes and so Julius proceeds to put his theories into practice by sabotaging the relationships he sees as conceited and insincere He uses Simon s insecurity Axel s reticence Morgan s self centeredness Rupert s idealism Peter s teenage rebelliousness Hilda s complacency The comedy that entertained me so much in the beginning of the novel gains tragic dimmensions as the victims of Julius seem unable to escape his devilish machinations Jealousy rears its ugly head and reason flies out the window Julius Mix up pity and vanity and novelty in an emotional person and you at once produce something very much like being in love Murdoch defines the ensuing chaos as a muddle the very opposite of order and clarity the very thing that Englishmen find abhorrent I believe I m uoting E M Forster on this Life is a mess and good intentions are not enough to see us through I ve been uoting most of the characters in the book it s time to shine the spotlight on Axel Eating reveals the characteristic grossness of the human race and also the in built failure of its satisfaction We arrive eager we stuff ourselves and we go away depressed and disappointed and probably feeling a bit ueasy into the bargain It s an image of the decu in human existence A greedy start and a stupefied finish Waiters who are constantly observing this cycle must be the most disillusioned of men Pretentious drivel or astute observation As a seriously overweight person I cannot refute this at least as far as expectations and fullfilment in the matter of food are concerned There is lot to discover in the book than just troubled relationships and self deceiving individuals I could go on at length about age and disillusionment as seen through the eyes of Leonard the one actor who isn t playing the game any and is just waiting for the exit But I don t want to end the review on such a bleak note I have seen several interpretations of the defeat from the title Rupert s awakening to the shallow nature of his philosophical musings when confronted with a real life crisis Julius exile from London when his dirty deeds are exposed Morgan s inability to see beyond her own needs Tallis slovenness and incapacity to put either his kitchen or his emotions in order But Murdoch chooses to close the novel with neither of these images she picks the only couple to emerge strengthened and closer to each other from the ordeal Of course our love is selfish Almost all human love is bloody selfish If one has anything to hang onto at all one clings to it relentlessly We ve tried to face it and to suffer it To take refuge in love is an instinct and not a disreputable one