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Writer and philosopher whose work, beginning with ‘The Outsider’, searched for the meaning of man’s existence

Classical & Opera: England's master symphonist

Unlike almost anywhere else in Europe, on these shores the symphony never really caught on as a primary musical form, at least not until this century. Few British symphonies dating from before 1900 exist; of those that do, only a couple by Parry and Stanford are ever played these days. In fact, the history of the British symphony does not seem officially to start until 1908 with Elgar's magisterial first - the prototypical and quintessential English symphony. It is a tremendously vibrant and superbly structured piece, described by its first conductor, Hans Richter, as "the greatest symphony of modern times, and not only in this country".

Speight of the nation

Back in the 1960s, an MP in the House of the Commons once said that the only sensible political debate in this country was taking place in Till Death Us Do Part.

Classical Music: Sixth sense for Mahler

New Queen's Hall Orchestra Barbican, London

150 years for the guide to who's who and what's what

WHILE some of the most famous celebrities in the world partied the night away at post-Oscar bashes last night, there was a much more discreet gathering in London, attended by anyone who really is anyone.

Managers of the future are in need of the feel-good factor

Good managment comes from treating people as excellent performers, writes Robert Craven

The Agreeable World of Wallace Arnold: Revealed: my one and only encounter with Ms Lewinsky

WHAT a rumpus! President Clinton's hobby of undoing his fly-buttons, dipping into the murky depths of his trousers, sifting through his "Y- Fronts" (dread word!) and unleashing his "private parts" on the world is further proof, if proof be needed, that the Americans are a very different kettle of fish to us.

Photography: 98for98 The century in photographs: today 1905

Our series of photographs which capture the spirit of the century continues with a picture taken in 1905, a year when the likelihood of world peace seemed further away than ever, and countries had begun to mobilise for war. In March, a 30 per cent increase in spending on the Royal Navy was announced. By September, British troops were on manoeuvres.

Bishops, professors, MPs, Wallace, Gromit

The new 'Who's Who' reflects the rise and rise of media folk, says Glenda Cooper. Perhaps it's worthy of an Oscar itself

Theatre: Heartbreak House

Almeida, London

Theatre: Gross Indecency

Minetta Lane Theatre, New York City

One from the heart

David Hare explains why Shaw's 1921 state-of-the-nation play is due for revival

Theatre: Pygmalion Albery Theatre, London Kiss Me Kate Regent's Park, London

"I've grown accustomed to her face," sings Professor Higgins in My Fair Lady, the musical version of Pygmalion. With three changes of director and Emily Lloyd's replacement, as Eliza, by a newcomer straight from drama school, simply recognising each other must be counted an achievement for the cast of this latest staging of the original Shaw play. Now steered into the West End by farceur Ray Cooney, the show is not as bad as you might expect and not as good as you have a right to expect. It's the kind of production for which the word "serviceable" might have been invented.

Election where nobody voted

George Bernard Shaw once wrote: "An election is a moral horror, as bad as a battle except for the blood: a mudbath for every soul concerned."

West End dream becomes reality for unknown actress

It is the stuff that dreams are made of - the star pulls out of a West End show and the unknown actor is plucked from oblivion to play the leading role.
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File: David Cameron offers a toast during a State Dinner in his honour March 14, 2012
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Stella Gibson is getting closer to catching her killer
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Brendan Rodgers seems more stressed than ever before as Liverpool manager
FOOTBALLI like Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game