Posted by: Lizzie Ross | July 2, 2010

Poll Results: Proust wins

Remembrance of Things Past, Marcel Proust (tr. C K Scott Moncrieff), 7 vols., 2264 pp.

OK, I can see this is going to take a while.

I’ve read the intro (J W Krutch’s essay includes a brief but helpful plot overview and list of themes). According to Krutch, Proust believed that life could only be fully experienced through memory, that being “in the moment” was not enough, that only reflection after the moment could complete the experience of any moment.

Here’s something else for me to keep in mind as I read:

From the dilemma presented by the fact that memory reveals its impotence at the same time that it seems the only instrument we possess, Proust was rescued by an essentially mystical experience — by the discovery that for him there was possible a kind of memory not identical with the ordinary sort: a vision of the eternity in which even the most completely forgotten experience has already taken its place.

It’s a tough philosophy. Perhaps only a man like Proust — rich enough to support a reclusive life style — could come up with it.

But I’m ready to begin. My goal for this week: p. 143, nearly half-way through the first volume. Ready?

Swann’s Way, Within a Budding Grove, The Guermantes Way, Cities of the Plain, The Captive, The Sweet Cheat Gone, The Past Recaptured

BTW: I’ll read the others eventually. I promise.

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Responses

  1. Good luck and let me know when you are ready for some madelines.


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