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Glenda Jackson

  • I used to believe that anything was better than nothing. Now I know that sometimes nothing is better.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Douglas Brode, Crossroads to the Cinema ()
  • Being an actress has something in common with being a housewife. They both look terribly easy to someone who hasn't done them. And the easier it looks, probably the better you are doing your job.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • ... a really good play is ambiguous — which is exactly why it endures. Every succeeding generation develops theories about it. The play's words provide very little clue. On the contrary, words are notoriously imprecise and open to every kind of interpretation, so you must search.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • The good writer and the good actor are always searching for what is essential. It is a never-ending task because what is essential is always elusive and, therefore, fascinating.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • To have something which one particularly wants to do is more important than anything else. It is even more important than succeeding in that thing you want to do. In fact it does not matter if you fail, but it does matter that you do or do not want to do something.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • I have been disappointed many times, but never defeated.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • ... it is extraordinary how much you are theirs, and how little they are yours. The child grows inside you and there is something mystical and mythical in that, but then you actually see that you are nothing more than the box in which they come. There is this total person, already formed, themselves.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • Motherhood is the most dangerous and awesome relationship possible. ... The parent/child blood relationship is one-sided and irrevocable and enduring. And it is all rather humbling.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • To counter-balance the natural humility of motherhood, I garden ... In the garden, more than any place, I really feel successful.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Nina Winter, Interview With the Muse ()
  • The important thing in acting is to be able to laugh and cry. If I have to cry, I think of my sex life. If I have to laugh, I think of my sex life.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in L.M. Boyd, syndicated column ()
  • [On being asked, 'Did you ever say that an actress needs to be able to laugh and to cry and that when you need to laugh you think of your sex life and when you need to cry you think of your sex life?':] No.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in David Nathan, Glenda Jackson ()
  • ... people only ever offer you a great deal of money for rubbish. The greater the number of noughts on the cheque, the greater the crapular content of the movie; the better the work, the less you're paid.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in David Nathan, Glenda Jackson ()
  • ... comedy ... is much harder to do than drama. It's not true that laugh and the world laughs with you. It's very hard to make a group of people laugh at the same thing; much easier to make them cry at the same thing. ... That's why great comic acting is probably the greatest acting there is.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in David Nathan, Glenda Jackson ()
  • If, as an actor, you allow yourself to be cocooned from the boring pin-pricks of day-to-day existence — like standing in a queue at the butcher's or any of the other dreary little events that we all have in our daily lives — you begin to lose your lifeline to what people are. And if you lose that, you eventually lose the ability to act.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Ian Woodward, Glenda Jackson ()
  • I'm the world's worst bearer of grudges. I'm sure I'll be bearing grudges and paying off old scores on my death-bed.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Ian Woodward, Glenda Jackson ()
  • ... ability atrophies through lack of exercise.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Ian Woodward, Glenda Jackson ()
  • For marriage the best man is the man within oneself. Most women need to develop their own 'masculine' qualities of independence, pride, courage and open sexuality.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Ian Woodward, Glenda Jackson ()
  • I'm less confident now than I've ever been. In this peculiar craft, confidence is something you spend a lifetime losing. I used to be frightened only one night a week but now I'm frightened of every performance. I mean really frightened.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Ian Woodward, Glenda Jackson ()
  • I can't actually see myself putting make-up on my face at the age of sixty, but I can see myself going on a camel train to Samarkand.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Ian Woodward, Glenda Jackson ()
  • It's appalling that there have to be movements organized to give human beings the right to be human beings in the eyes of other human beings.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • 1979, in The Advocate ()
  • Acting is not about dressing up. Acting is about stripping bare. The whole essence of learning lines is to forget them so you can make them sound like you thought of them that instant.

    • Glenda Jackson,
    • in Sunday Telegraph ()
  • One knows one's done one's job as a parent properly if one's children reject everything one stands for.

    • Glenda Jackson

Glenda Jackson, English actor, politician

(1936)

Full name: Glenda May Jackson.