Saturday, June 30, 2007

Proust summarizes Proust

Proust himself would have fared well in Monty Python's All-England Summarize Proust Competition, whose goal is to summarize À la recherche du temps perdu in fifteen seconds. Here's one sentence that does the job pretty well (with, in this translation, at least a second to spare):

A novelist could shape the whole life of his hero by depicting his consecutive loves in more or less the same terms, giving thereby the impression, not of being self-repetitive, but of being creative, there being less power in an artificial innovation than in a reiteration designed to convey a hitherto unrevealed truth.

From In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower, translated by James Grieve (New York: Penguin, 2002), 473

All Proust posts (Pinboard)

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