Subtle and Sep 24, 2009
Coming to the end of In Search of Lost Time I was looking for further reading on Proust. Francis-Noel Thomas' essay quickly came to the rescue. It's a slow-burner of an essay, and the turning point for me came around "Syllabus of Errors," which breaks the extraordinary novel down to its essential events/characters/features. By treating the work as a novel, and writing about it purely as a work of fiction, it allowed me to see (what I think might be) more of Proust's intent, and isolate it from the more confusing view the novel's gotten popularly lately - that's it a hodgepodge of biography and novel. All in all, I had a clearer view of the work as a work of art and was able to see its more distinguished features better after reading. I look forward to reading the rest of the essays in The Writer Writing.