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Dieter Roth — was an artist of astonishing breadth and diversity, producing graphics, drawings, paintings, sculptures, assemblages, and installation works involving sound recordings and video. He was also a composer, musician, poet, and writer.

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Sinan Antoon returns to the Iraq war in a poetic and provocative tribute to reclaiming In this work Calum Carmichael—a legal scholar who applies a literary approach to the study We shouted at each other a bit but nothing serious. We are both bone-lazy.

The reason Burton — unlike Bogarde, with his novels, his autobiographies, his reviews — never fulfils his dreams of writing is that it would involve sustained work. Similarly his vision of teaching at Oxford — teaching medieval poets in English, French, Italian and German, he fantasises — dwindles into a few personal appearances because it requires hard labour, not least having to learn medieval French, Italian and German. He despises all directors — Huston, Losey, Zeffirelli — and knows that he could do it better than they: of Zeffirelli's dazzling The Taming of the Shrew , he vows, while acting in it, that "never again, if I ever have the chance, will I permit anybody to direct something that I know I am better qualified to do.

And acting is a dreary burden to him for the same reason: he is "simply uninterested in the work".

Richard Burton Diaries: ‘Elizabeth is an eternal one night stand’

The key to his understanding of acting is in his remark that "my first love … is not the stage, but a book with lovely words in it. This is not acting: it is speaking. And this is why Burton found acting so unsatisfying; he was using so little of himself. He is bored by it. The words bore, boring, bored and boredom appear with monotonous regularity throughout the diaries.

The Richard Burton Diaries by Richard Burton

Maria Callas is a bore. All children, including his own, bore him "after a while". Like a character out of Lermontov or Chekhov, he gazes at the world with ever-dyspeptic eyes. But why? Whence all this misery?

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He asks the same of himself. Something went wrong in my head at the wrong time … I am, I think, sublimely selfish. Meanwhile, whatever the disappointment, there is a great deal of money to made, and to be spent. He is generous to individuals and to institutions, but when he impulsively buys the private jet he's travelling in an incident quoted on the cover of the book , it simply turns the stomach.

The rewards of the world gratify him, though they, too cannot satisfy him.

He is quietly pleased with his CBE, knowing that it may lead to a knighthood. But increasingly the booze obliterates both his life and his career.

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He and Taylor break up, the relationship having turned into something even worse than the one they so vividly depicted in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Always he is articulate, opinionated and fascinating.

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His diaries offer a rare and fresh perspective on his own life and career, Elizabeth Taylor's, and the glamorous world of film, theatre and celebrity that they inhabited. Although never trained as an actor, Burton was, at one time, the highest-paid actor in Hollywood. He remains closely associated in the public consciousness with his second wife, actress Elizabeth Taylor.


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He lives in Swansea. Richard Burton Chris Williams. Burton's diaries are a telling, often painfully truthful addition to the social history of the years between and '.