National Subsets: Ireland
1906 - 1989
Multilingual wordsmith. He dramatized the ordinary in life and found meaning in the silences between the words to be as potent as the words themselves. He was shaken by the death of his father, he was active in the French Resistance during WW2, and he chose to wed – moral statements in themselves, even though finding the words for moral sense is commonly a struggle for him in a world of negativity and emptiness.
Samuel Beckett (11 mins) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpgOcWZHEcY&list=PLssmvVigZDMlUSU2AksFc_2Z70KthwMV3
1729 - 1797
A powerfully articulate Anglo-Irish politician, directly engaged with issues of corruption in public life and addressed the balance between the desirability of revolutionary change and the need for durable continuity – in America, France and India. His education began at a Quaker school, then focussed in Law and then finally for some forty years was continued through daily interaction with contemporary politicians. His eloquent speeches apparently made more impact on their readers than hearers – poor delivery distracted from their substance.
1919 - 1999
Novelist and philosopher who was continually engaging with the matter of moral ingredients of individual and social relationships and behaviour. She was influenced as much by classical authors such as Plato as by contemporary existential authors such as Sartre. She excelled at exploring and conveying theoretical issues and concerns in grounded situational terms. The situations are invariably complex, with great emotional depth, considerable sexual content and intertwining of actual and symbolic experience.
Iris Murdoch on philosophy and literature (10 mins) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m47A0AmqxQE&list=PL078C8C36FAF80DCF
1867 - 1911