Marcel Proust's Search for Lost Time: A Reader's Guide to Remembrance of Things Past

Marcel Proust's Search for Lost Time: A Reader's Guide to Remembrance of Things Past


By (author) Patrick Alexander

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  • Publisher: Vintage Books
  • Format: Paperback | 385 pages
  • Dimensions: 130mm x 201mm x 23mm | 363g
  • Publication date: 22 September 2009
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0307472329
  • ISBN 13: 9780307472328
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations, maps
  • Sales rank: 88,830

Product description

An accessible, irreverent guide to one of the most admired--and entertaining--novels of the past century. There is no other guide like this; a user-friendly and enticing entry into the marvelously enjoyable world of Proust. At seven volumes, three thousand pages, and more than four hundred characters, as well as a towering reputation as a literary classic, Proust's novel can seem daunting. But though begun a century ago, in 1909, it is in fact as engaging and relevant to our times as ever. Patrick Alexander is passionate about Proust's genius and appeal--he calls the work "outrageously bawdy and extremely funny"--and in his guide he makes it more accessible to the general reader through detailed plot summaries, historical and cultural background, a guide to the fifty most important characters, maps, family trees, illustrations, and a brief biography of Proust. Essential for readers and book groups currently reading Proust and who want help keeping track of the huge cast and intricate plot, this Reader's Guide is also a wonderful introduction for students and new readers and a memory-refresher for long-time fans.

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Author information

Patrick Alexander retired from his position as a director at the University of Miami in 2007 to focus on writing. More information is available at

Table of contents

Introduction:  Proust and In Search of Lost Time   PART ONE : What Happens in Proust Overview Summary Synopsis of In Search of Lost Time   Swann's Way     Overture     Combray     Swann in Love     Place-Names: The Name Within a Budding Grove     Madame Swann at Home     Place-Names: The Place The Guermantes Way Cities of the Plain The Captive The Fugitive Time Regained   PART TWO : Who's Who in Proust List of Main Characters Titles Guide to Main Characters   PART THREE: The World of Proust A Brief Life of Marcel Proust Place-Names: The Places Family Education and Professional Life Drugs and Sex The Writer Marcel Proust's Paris Proust's Paris of the Belle Époque Marcel Proust and French History La Belle Époque The Dreyfus Affair   Appendix A. The Seven Novels B. Page References C. Page and Word Count   Suggestions for Further Reading Internet Resources Acknowledgments