Liberation: Diaries: 1970-1983
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Candid and revealing, the final volume of Christopher Isherwood's diaries brings together his thoughts on life, love, and death. Beginning in the period of his life when he wrote Kathleen and Frank, his first intensely personal book, Liberation: Diaries 1970–1983 intimately and wittily records Isherwood's immersion in the 1970s art scene in Los Angeles, New York, and London—a world peopled by the likes of Robert Rauschenberg, Ed Ruscha, Andy Warhol, and David Hockney, as well as his Broadway writing career, which brought him in touch with John Huston, Merchant and Ivory, John Travolta, John Voight, Elton John, David Bowie, Joan Didion, and Armistead Maupin. With a preface by Edmund White, Liberation is a rich and engaging final memoir by one of the most celebrated writers of his generation.
Detachment. I’m getting to be a chronic evening napper at the theater, especially if I’ve eaten supper beforehand. I napped through a lot of Krapp’s Last Tape, although I admire it very much. Don says it was spoilt by Albert Finney’s affectations. At the end of it, Finney didn’t acknowledge the applause or even rise to his feet; he sat motionless in his chair. This pretentious stunt may not have been his idea, however; perhaps the director wanted it. For Billie Whitelaw—the voice behind the
Al said to me, “Don’s twice the artist David is.” Don says that Billy Al is very shrewd—which I know— and that he sees into the real David, whose greatest inspiration is ambition. We scream at the neighbors’ dogs. Last night, being a bit drunk, we screamed a lot, at midnight, and this resulted in a furious call on my recording machine from a Mrs. Lawrence Davidson, who lives below at 242 Maybery Road. However, when I called her up today, she seemed quite on our side. Her bedroom is right next to
Christopher, followed the regiment to Strensall, Aldershot, and Frimley; in 1911 a second son, Richard, was born and the family moved again to Limerick, Ireland, early the following year. Frank was sent from Limerick via England to the Front Line almost as soon as war was declared in the summer of 1914, and he was killed probably the night of May 8, 1915 in the second battle of Ypres in Flanders, although the exact circumstances of his death are unknown. Isherwood felt that Frank was
in the house, sort of communing with it. Mrs. Bradley says he doesn’t realize, or rather simply isn’t aware, of what terrible shape it is in. He invited some Americans (alleged distant cousins) to see over it and Mrs. Bradley was dismayed because she felt it had been a shock to them. She says that Richard is really unwilling to have it repaired in any way. This time I feel the spirit of place very powerfully here. And it is a spirit or it’s nothing. Physically, Disley is just a rather smug
her colleagues, she cited the First Amendment (freedom of speech) instead of the Fifth (the right not to serve witness against oneself ). She took over Isherwood’s teaching position at L.A. State College when he left, during the 1960s. Bachardy drew her portrait a number of times during the same period. She appears in D.2. Parone, Ed. American stage director. He assisted Gordon Davidson with the professional Theater Group at UCLA, where he directed Oh! What a Lovely War. In 1967, he moved with