Department of Philosophy

The Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology | Lund University


My thesis, entitled Perfection and Fiction comprises a study of the ethical thought of Iris Murdoch with special emphasis, as evidenced by the title, on how morality is intimately connected to self-improvement aiming at perfection and how the study of (literary) fiction has an important role to play in our strive towards bettering ourselves within the framework set by Murdoch’s moral philosophy.

Other areas of competence include the history of (moral) philosophy (including history theory), ethical theory, eudemonism, self-realisationism, moral psychology, aesthetics, literature and philosophy, and the philosophy of emotions.

At present, my main research can be grouped under three headings. Firstly, I am currently working on exemplifying how engagement with fiction, and in particular literature, can be understood as furthering moral understanding from a moral perfectionist perspective through a series of close readings of American author John Williams’s three mature novels—i.e. the Emersonian Butcher’s Crossing (1960), the Platonic Stoner (1965), and the Stoic Augustus (1972). Secondly, I am trying to argue that the so-called ‘Somerville School’—Philippa Foot, Elizabeth Anscombe, Mary Midgley, and Iris Murdoch—ought to be awarded a prominent place in the history of the introduction of historical (or ‘genealogical’) arguments into analytic philosophy, and that doing so opens up for novel ways of understanding different kinds of such arguments that has hitherto been overlooked. Third and finally, I am working on establishing new ways in which we can understand role-specific duties and commitments on both an individual and collective level within a rapidly changing Artworld context.


About the research

Areas of Specialisation: History of Ethics, Moral Philosophy, Ethical Theory, Eudaimonism, Moral Perfectionism

Areas of Competence: History of (Moral) Philosophy (encompassing philosophy of history and history theory), Meta-ethics, Value Theory, Moral Psychology, Philosophy of the Emotions, Philosophy and Literature, Philosophy of Religion


Books (1)
Articles (7)
Conference contributions (4)
Reviews (1)
Articles in specialist publications and popular press (2)

Research portal (Lund University)


Other tasks and qualifications

Professional Service

Conference Organisation

  1. ‘Graduate workshop on Fiction and Philosophy II’, Department of Philosophy and Cognitive Science, Lund University. October 4-5th 2018. With Gloria Mähringer, Ylwa Wirling, and Anna Persson.
  2. ‘Graduate workshop on Fiction and Philosophy’, Lund University, Department of Philosophy. April 14-15th 2016. With Dan Egonsson, Ylwa Wirling, Thérèse Söderström and Anna Persson.


2018 Seminar leader, G.E. M. Anscombe Seminar, Lund University.

2017 Seminar leader, Iris Murdoch Seminar, Lund University.

2017-2018 Secretary and Vice Chair , Philosophical Society, Lund University.

2012-2016 Chair of the Philosophical Society, Lund University.

2011-2018 Seminar leader, PhD. Seminar in practical Philosophy, Lund University.

Frits Gåvertsson

Teaching Staff
Practical Philosophy
Department of Philosophy

Contact information

E-mail frits.gavertssonfil.luse

Phone +46 46 222 78 59

Room LUX:B514

Visiting address Helgonavägen 3, Lund

Postal address Box 192, 221 00 Lund

Internal post code 30