Arts and Entertainment

"Bo Burnham: What", Pleasance Grand, Edinburgh Fringe, August

TV drama: Britain's got talent

British audiences have long been in thrall to US drama series. But the BFI's celebration of home-grown television shows that we too have been enjoying a golden age, argues Gerard Gilbert

The Taste of Sorrow, By Jude Morgan Headline

Jude Morgan specialises in writing novels about real-life historical literary figures, and while she lacks the postmodern play of a writer such as, say, Emma Tennant, she is nevertheless a truly appealing re-creator of fascinating times and individuals – in this case, the Brontë sisters.

Popcorn, By Garry Mulholland

It doesn't take a great leap of imagination to see why film directors find rock bands so compelling. Their stories invariably take in the crucial components of drama – rebellion, egotism, money, sex, drugs and, in the more extreme cases, death. And they have never been so popular. Recently we have seen Anton Corbijn's Control, about Joy Division's Ian Curtis, Sam Taylor-Wood's Nowhere Boy, about a youthful John Lennon, and Mat Whitecross's paean to Ian Dury, Sex & Drugs & Rock'n' Roll, as well as a deluge of rock-docs on the likes of Dr Feelgood, Joe Strummer and Anvil.

Sunshine State, By James Miller

Struggling under cover of Darkness

Amol Rajan: Justice to the victims

I got into a bit of trouble in conference this morning for making the point - not as sensitively as I should have, perhaps - that the spectacle of grieving mothers may feed the tabloid beast, but is irreconcilable with the demands of post-modern law.

Steve Connor: Gain height and you might lose weight

Science Notebook: You can get rid of pounds by simply living on a mountain for a few weeks

Simon Calder: A post-modern pentathlon to the future

The man who pays his way

Visible Invisible, Parasol Unit, London

Mind games, lies, deception – all are playfully and thoughtfully explored in this exhibition that sets off a new trend

Professor Elizabeth Fallaize: Scholar celebrated for her work on Simone de Beauvoir and for championing Women's Studies

Professor Elizabeth Fallaize, who has died aged 59, was a leading figure in French studies, an international authority on the work of Simone de Beauvoir and, at the time of her early retirement in 2008, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Education at the University of Oxford. Throughout her career she worked with great energy and effectiveness for the development of the discipline of French Studies, for the advancement of women and Women's Studies in higher education, and for the College – St John's – and University she had joined 20 years previously. She was appointed Officier dans l'ordre des palmes académiques in 2002, and promoted to Commandeur in 2009.

Meryl Streep: Golden girl

No good parts in Hollywood for older actresses? Try telling that to a star who turned 60 this year and has never been on such a roll

The Misanthrope, Comedy Theatre, London

Thea Sharrock's revival of this 1996 contemporary update by Martin Crimp of Molière's great satire against both the amoral courtly rumour-mill and courtly malpractice is an excellent, platinum-cast treat.

Book Of A Lifetime: Slaughterhouse-Five, By Kurt Vonnegut

This was the proposition discussed at a dinner I attended in Beijing: Western civilisation imploded in 1914, shattered by the First World War. We live in its ruins. The moral certainty that gave us Balzac, Flaubert, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Melville and Dickens was blown to pieces in the trenches. Afterwards, music, literature and painting floundered in a wasteland of cynicism, moral ambiguity, frivolity and despair. We have achieved nothing since except barren technique. Literature is now being pulled apart by post-modernism and commercialism...

First Night: The Misanthrope, Comedy Theatre, London

Knightley casts aside critics in thrilling debut

Vitamin Ph, Introduced by TJ Demos

This survey of current photographs delineates the weird state of post-modern art – wildly diverse and personal, yet often bizarrely imitative. Skipping surrogates of Nan Goldin (nudity and scars) and Martin Parr (lurid close-up of iced buns), you encounter images that live on in the mind for their chilly resonance.

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As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

As in 1942, Germany must show restraint over Greece

Mussolini tried to warn his ally of the danger of bringing the country to its knees. So should we, says Patrick Cockburn
Britain's widening poverty gap should be causing outrage at the start of the election campaign

The short stroll that should be our walk of shame

Courting the global elite has failed to benefit Britain, as the vast disparity in wealth on display in the capital shows
Homeless Veterans appeal: The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty

Homeless Veterans appeal

The rise of the working poor: when having a job cannot prevent poverty
Prince Charles the saviour of the nation? A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king

Prince Charles the saviour of the nation?

A new book highlights concerns about how political he will be when he eventually becomes king
How books can defeat Isis: Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad

How books can defeat Isis

Patrick Cockburn was able to update his agenda-setting 'The Rise of Islamic State' while under attack in Baghdad
Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

Judith Hackitt: The myths of elf 'n' safety

She may be in charge of minimising our risks of injury, but the chair of the Health and Safety Executive still wants children to be able to hurt themselves
The open loathing between Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu just got worse

The open loathing between Obama and Netanyahu just got worse

The Israeli PM's relationship with the Obama has always been chilly, but going over the President's head on Iran will do him no favours, says Rupert Cornwell
French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

French chefs get 'le huff' as nation slips down global cuisine rankings

Fury at British best restaurants survey sees French magazine produce a rival list
Star choreographer Matthew Bourne gives young carers a chance to perform at Sadler's Wells

Young carers to make dance debut

What happened when superstar choreographer Matthew Bourne encouraged 27 teenage carers to think about themselves for once?
Design Council's 70th anniversary: Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch

Design Council's 70th anniversary

Four of the most intriguing prototypes from Ones to Watch
Dame Harriet Walter: The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment

Dame Harriet Walter interview

The actress on learning what it is to age, plastic surgery, and her unease at being honoured by the establishment
Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Art should not be a slave to the ideas driving it

Critics of Tom Stoppard's new play seem to agree that cerebral can never trump character, says DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's winter salads will make you feel energised through February

Bill Granger's winter salads

Salads aren't just a bit on the side, says our chef - their crunch, colour and natural goodness are perfect for a midwinter pick-me-up
England vs Wales: Cool head George Ford ready to put out dragon fire

George Ford: Cool head ready to put out dragon fire

No 10’s calmness under pressure will be key for England in Cardiff
Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links