The Philosopher

Malcolm Murray

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ISBN: 9781988692227

The Philosopher

  Author:   Malcolm Murray    
  Publisher:  Island Studies Press

Rooted in the absurdist tradition, this collection of one-act plays by philosophy professor Malcolm Murray focuses on existential themes. Provocative, perceptive, and rife with questions about the motives and morality of our everyday conduct, his characters range from a philosopher in chains brought up from the basement to entertain guests to a psychologist who assists a traumatized patient to become more self-aware, only to result in greater angst.

Comedic, satirical, and at times solemn, these nine plays showcase the range of human complexity from bullshit to wisdom. “Chop Wood, Carry Water,” takes its name from the Zen Buddhist quote: “Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.” “Fiction Tutorial” is a meta-fiction piece with an interrupting director. In “The Abettor,” Bianca learns she is pregnant and her boyfriend, Taylor, dashes off, hitch-hiking to British Columbia to earn money fighting forest fires. He is picked up by Vincent, a homicidal sociopath, and they quickly return to Taylor and Bianca’s home. Cry of the Loon” offers a small glimpse, in reverse, of the horror Canadians have inflicted upon Indigenous peoples, horrors that render hollow any attempt at apology.

The Philosopher ultimately deals with the search for meaning and our need to believe. In “The Art of Posing” Hubert asks, “Believe what though?” “Politics. Religion. Sports. It’s obvious that content doesn’t matter. It’s just belief itself. What they fear most is not believing. No one can stand that.”

Details and Specs
ISBN associated with this title:9781988692227
Item MC0244
PublisherIsland Studies Press
PublisherIsland Studies Press
Published onApril 1 2019
Language eng
Pages 284
Format Paperback
Dimensions9(in) x 6(in)
Shipping weight365(g)
Status ACTIVE TITLE
Apart from being a playwright, Malcolm Murray is a fiction writer and philosopher. His produced plays are "Art of Posing" (2014), "The Abettor" (2013), "The Philosopher" (2012), and "Chop Wood, Carry Water" (2008). His short stories have appeared in Snow Softly Falling, Riptides, Galleon, and Fiction Fix. His philosophy books are Morals and Consent (2017), The Atheist's Primer (2010), The Moral Wager (2007), Liberty Games and Contracts (2007), and Critical Reflection with Neb Kujundzic (2005). Malcolm lives with a wife, a cat, a dog, and recently, though less agreeably, a racoon. He teaches Philosophy at the University of Prince Edward Island.