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Marcel Proust

Page history last edited by Thomas Kutzli 1 year, 7 months ago


Valentin Louis Georges Eugène Marcel Proust (French pronunciation: [maʁsɛl pʁust]; 10 July 1871 – 18 November 1922) was a French novelist, critic and essayist best known for his monumental À la recherche du temps perdu (In Search of Lost Time; earlier translated as Remembrance of Things Past). It was published in seven parts between 1913 and 1927.

Proust, who was homosexual, was one of the first European novelists to treat homosexuality openly and at length.

His life and family circle changed considerably between 1900 and 1905. In February 1903, Proust's brother Robert married and left the family home. His father died in November of the same year. Finally, and most crushingly, Proust's beloved mother died in September 1905. She left him a considerable inheritance. His health throughout this period continued to deteriorate.

Proust spent the last three years of his life mostly confined to his cork-lined bedroom, sleeping during the day and working at night to complete his novel. He died of pneumonia and a pulmonary abscess in 1922. He was buried in the Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris.


Relato sobre Marcel Proust y James Joyce - 14/01/20


Joyce and Proust met on May 18, 1922 but there are a number of conflicting versions of what occurred and little evidence of their assessment of each other's work. "What he envied Proust were his material circumstances: 'Proust can write; he has a comfortable place at the Etoile, floored with cork and with cork on the walls to keep it quiet. And, I, writing in this place, people coming in and out. I wonder how I can finish Ulysses." (Ellmann, pg. 509). When Proust died on November 18, 1922, Joyce attended his funeral.  Furthermore, cork had a special significance for Joyce: his father was from County Cork. Always the punster, Joyce once mounted a portrait of his father in a cork frame.


In 2020 we read Proust's "A la recherche..." online. We named one of our sweet kittens "Proust", another "Odette" :-)

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