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Owl of Minerva: A Memoir


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Table of Contents

Foreword: Light, Darkness and Owls Part 1: Early Days, 1924-33. Greenford Rectory Starting School. Moving On. Greenford Growing. Parental Activities. Other Scrutton Relatives. More Relatives: The Hays. Ladies and Non-Ladies Part 2: Ancestors. Thomas Urquhart and the Universal Language. Early Scruttons. The Lord Justice Part 3: At Downe House School, 1932-37. The Place. Learning This And That. Attending to History. Collingwood: A World Apart Part 4: At Oxford, 1938-42. Preparations. First Impressions. Marxist Dreams. Studying the Classics. A Changing World. Life in Wartime. Marxism in Decline. Starting Greats. The Philosophical Scene. What is Empiricism? Gender Querie.s What Iris Said Part 5: Wartime Jobs, 1942-45. In The Civil Service. Interlude at Downe. At Bedford School Part 6: In Oxford Again, 1945-9. On Boar's Hill. Winter Interlude. Not Doing the B.Phil. Part 7: At Reading, 1949-50. Dialectical Difficulties Part 8: At Newcastle, 1950 - 2004. Settling In Journalistic Ploys. Newcastle University. The Philosophy Department. Writing About Beasts and Other Things. Family Movements: Geoff's Activities. Darker Weather: Survival Strategies

About the Author

Mary Midgley was born in London in 1919. She is one of the most renowned moral philosophers of her generation and the author of many books, including Beast and Man, Wickedness and The Myths We Live By. She has taken part in many broadcast events, including The Moral Maze and Woman's Hour.


'Not only a superbly lively account of being educated in the first half of the twentieth century, but a portrait of one of the most utterly sensible, accessible and humane philosophers of our age.' - "Rowan Williams (Archbishop), Times Literary Supplement" 'Her memoir is a warm and reassuring account of the value of civilised life and of the confidence it can provide.' - "The Scotsman" 'This memoir contains humour as well as wit and is a joy to read.' - "The Tablet" 'A warm and humorous memoir by one of the UKs leading moral philosophers. Many young students sense well enough that in the present darkness, articulate and well-informed understanding of their scientific civilization, its values and politics is necessary. They need their Midgleys.' - "Simon Blackburn", "The New Scientist" 'Insightful and enjoyable' "TPM Online"

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