Iris Murdoch was born in 1919 in Dublin and studied at Somerville College, Oxford. In 1948 she became a fellow of St Anne’s College, Oxford. She was shortlisted for the Booker Prize on numerous occasions with The Nice and the Good (1969), Bruno’s Dream (1970), The Black Prince (1973), The Good Apprentice (1985) and The Book of the Brotherhood (1987). She won the prize in 1978 for The Sea, the Sea.
Iris Murdoch was awarded the CBE in 1976 and in 1987 she was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire. In 2001 her first published novel, Under the Net, was selected as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century by the editorial board of the American Modern Library.
After a five-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease, Iris Murdoch died in 1999.