Remembrance of Things Past: Volume I – Swann’s Way & Within a Budding Grove by Marcel Proust

Remembrance of Things Past- Volume I - Swann's Way & Within a Budding Grove Marcel Proust book review

Marcel Proust began writing masterpiece RemeRemembrance of Things Past: Volume I – Swann’s Way & Within a Budding Grove in 1909 and completed in 1927. It is a single book with seven volumes. It’s long and remarkable and observes our narrator’s, a sensitive young man who wants to be a writer, inner emotional life as well as life’s manners and foibles.

“But sometimes illumination comes to our rescue at the very moment when all seems lost; we have knocked at every door and they open on nothing until, at last, we stumble unconsciously against the only one through which we can enter the kingdom we have sought in vain a hundred years – and it opens.”

The prose is beautiful and the quality of the emotion intense. The writing in dense and thick as if you’re deep under water, and you’re being is being compressed with the details of life. Remembrance’s themes consist of memory and sexuality and class. “Remembrance of things past is not necessarily the remembrance of things as they were.”

The only way to read Proust is to go slow. You can only read six pages at the most at a time. The work is so rich; it stays with you forever.

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Joseph Raffetto

Joseph Raffetto earned a B.A. in Comparative Literature from San Diego State University. He can be found online @noovella on Twitter, Tumblr, Facebook, and Goodreads. His books are available on all online booksellers.