I have just read Benjamin Lipscomb’s The Women Are Up to Something and found it an interesting and readable book. I met Elizabeth Anscombe and knew Philippa Foot and admired Iris Murdoch from afar. There seems to be a subtext to the book that is never explicitly stated, namely that it was their being womenthat enabled them to overthrow the prevailing moral philosophy at Oxford in the middle of the last century. The idea would be that men are morally desiccated and divorced from “real life” while women are in touch with lived reality and more open-minded. That may or may not be true, but the case of the four women (Mary Midgley being the fourth) doesn’t prove it. Virtue ethics has been advocated by many men since Aristotle (a man!) invented it, and criticisms of Hare’s moral philosophy have come from male philosophers as well as female philosophers. One would need to do some kind of statistical survey to establish that women are better at this stuff than men, and no such survey has ever been done. I think myself that it was the individual qualities of these four women that enabled them to get beyond the Ayer-Hare axis. My own view is that emotivism and prescriptivism are both preposterous moral theories.