The Cambridge Introduction to Marcel Proust
Proust's A la recherche du temps perdu (In Search of Lost Time, 1913-27) changed the course of modern narrative fiction. This Introduction provides an account of Proust's life, the socio-historical and cultural contexts of his work and an assessment of his early works. At its core is a volume-by-volume study of In Search of Lost Time, which attends to its remarkable superstructure, as well as to individual images and the intricacies of Proust's finely-stitched prose. The book reaches beyond stale commonplaces of madeleines and memory, alerting readers to Proust's verbal virtuosity, his preoccupations with the fleeting and the unforeseeable, with desire, jealousy and the nature of reality. Lively, informative chapters on Proust criticism and the work's afterlives in contemporary culture provide a multitude of paths to follow. The book charges readers with the energy and confidence to move beyond anecdote and hearsay and to read Proust's novel for themselves.
- Electronic book text
- CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
- Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
- Cambridge, United Kingdom
'Watt creates a successful guidebook for new and hesitant readers of the Recherche ... [He] shares with his reader what, in the end, is the true secret of Proust's novel: for its great length and difficulty, the Recherche holds the promise of being an inexhaustible source of pleasure.' H-France Review 'Watt manages to make a difference with his fresh overview of Proust reception beyond literary scholarship and his focus on highlighting the richness of the Search beyond the well-known stereotypes of madeleine and memory. One of his most commendable achievements in this respect is the attention to the text's linguistic quality.' Modern & Contemporary France
Table of contents
Introduction; 1. Life; 2. Contexts; 3. Early works and late essays; 4. In Search of Lost Time; 5. Proust criticism; Epilogue: Proustian afterlives; Further reading.