John Osborne

John Osborne was an English playwright, screenwriter, and actor, known for his excoriating prose and intense critical stance towards established social and political norms. He is best known for his play 'Look Back in Anger', which transformed British theatre in the 1950s.


This list of books are ONLY the books that have been ranked on the lists that are aggregated on this site. This is not a comprehensive list of all books by this author.

  1. 1. Look Back In Anger

    The play centers around Jimmy Porter, an intelligent and educated but disaffected young man of working-class origin who is married to Alison, a woman from a more privileged background. Set in post-war Britain, the narrative captures the couple's volatile relationship and Jimmy's frustration with the lack of opportunities and the class structure that he feels traps him. The arrival of Alison's friend, Helena, adds further tension as she both criticizes and is attracted to Jimmy's raw passion. Themes of anger, class conflict, and disillusionment with the establishment are woven throughout the play, which ultimately explores the complexities of human relationships and societal expectations.

    The 1859th Greatest Book of All Time
  2. 2. The Entertainer

    The play delves into the life and struggles of a third-rate vaudeville performer, Archie Rice, who is facing a personal and professional crisis. As he grapples with a failing career on the stage and mounting debts, his family life is also in turmoil. The narrative explores themes of disillusionment and the decline of the British Empire through the lens of Archie's interactions with his family, including his elderly father, who was once a successful performer, his long-suffering wife, and his politically active daughter. The play presents a poignant commentary on the changing face of entertainment and the generational tensions in post-war Britain.

    The 11016th Greatest Book of All Time