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Al Alvarez
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Al Alvarez

Al Alvarez (1929-) is an English poet, writer and critic. During the late fifties and early sixties he was the poetry editor for The Observer where he introduced British readers to John Berryman, Robert Lowell, Sylvia Plath, Zbigniew Herbert, and Miroslav Holub.

Alvarez is the author of many non-fiction books on topics ranging from suicide, divorce and dreams, The Savage God, Life After Marriage, Night, to poker, North Sea oil and mountaineering, The Biggest Game in Town, Offshore, Feeding the Rat, as well as an autobiography, Where Did It All Go Right?.

His 1962 poetry anthology The New Poetry was hailed at the time a fresh departure. It championed the American style, in relation to the perceived excessive 'gentility' of British poetry of the time.

Alvarez was portrayed by Jared Harris in the 2003 film Sylvia, which chronicles the troubled relationship between Sylvia Plath and her husband Ted Hughes.