In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower

By Elyse Graham In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower (1919) tells a story of separation and emergence. The first half enacts the shifting perspectives of social initiation. The narrator, resuming his portrayal of his younger self at a point several years past the conclusion of the previous volume, dissects the cold sociability and… Continue Reading In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower

Swann’s Way

by Elyse Graham, Steven Hobbs, and Laura B. Marcus Swann’s Way, the first installment of Marcel Proust‘s seven-volume In Search of Lost Time, was published in 1913. Overview by Elyse Graham The famous opening passage of Swann’s Way, in which the narrator describes his periodic experience of emerging from sleep without a clear sense of… Continue Reading Swann’s Way

Remembrance of Things Past (A la recherché du temps perdu)

by Pericles Lewis Marcel Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past (1913-1927), also known by a more literal translation of its French title, In Search of Lost Time, is the only modernist novel that has a fair claim to being as important in the history of the genre as James Joyce’s Ulysses. Joyce claimed not to have… Continue Reading Remembrance of Things Past (A la recherché du temps perdu)

Contre Saint-Beuve

by Michael Shapiro Among the notebooks found at the time of Marcel Proust’s death were those containing Contre Sainte-Beuve, written 1895–1900. Contre Sainte-Beuve is an unusual document—part narrative, part essay—that can be read as an early draft of the first volumes of A la recherche du temps perdu and as a statement of Proust’s aesthetic… Continue Reading Contre Saint-Beuve

Marcel Proust

Biography by Elyse Graham 1: What Is this Ecstasy? Born in a Paris suburb in 1871, Proust grew up in cloistered privilege. His father was a celebrated physician, a self-made man who never understood his son’s dreamy indolence and suspected that his illnesses were psychosomatic. His mother, who fussed over his health and presided over his cultural… Continue Reading Marcel Proust