THE TWO WORLDS OF MARCEL PROUST by Harold March

THE TWO WORLDS OF MARCEL PROUST

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A dispassionate, discerning study of Proust, the man, and his work, the first (to my knowledge) all-over analysis since that of Leo Pierre-Quint. This does not differ from orthodox opinion (save in its greater stress on his homosexuality), and once again we see the man, paralytically indecisive, minutely analytical, responsive to people and yet a solitary, from the coddled childhood to his retirement from the world in the legendary cork-lined room, confronted by the constant image of death. March interprets in the man and his writing, the duality between the intellectual and the intuitional; describes the evolution of his masterwork, its structure, its obstructive techniques; its characters, with their keys and sources; the society it reflected; its individuality as throughout the overtones of experience-rather than experience itself- are suggested. In a final evaluation, there is the concept of the two worlds of Proust, the first where ""necessity, illusion, suffering, change, decay and death are the law"" -- the second which emerged as a world of ""freedom, beauty and peace"". For a literary, intellectual audience -- although the Proustian following of faddists, fanciers and cultists is more limited than it was a decade ago.

Pub Date: April 30th, 1948
Publisher: Univ. of Pennsylvania