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Supernatural Proust : myth and metaphor in A le recherche du temps perdu

Author: Margaret Topping
Publisher: Cardiff : University of Wales Press, 2007.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"Supernatural Proust charts a dual evolution. The mythical quest of the narrator protagonist of Proust's masterpiece is matched by an aesthetic quest on the part of the narrator as would-be writer. Transported into the world of fairytale, confronted with artistic legends ranging from Polichinelle to Parsifal, or seduced by the reassurances of metaphysical beliefs as diverse as spiritualism and astrology, the  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
Named Person: Marcel Proust; Marcel Proust
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Margaret Topping
ISBN: 9780708318669 0708318665
OCLC Number: 62307773
Description: viii, 223 pages ; 23 cm
Responsibility: Margaret Topping.

Abstract:

Provides a detailed analysis of intertextual sources from the perspective of the metaphorical re-writings which they undergo in Proust's writing. The author re-evaluates the broader role within the  Read more...

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   schema:reviewBody ""Supernatural Proust charts a dual evolution. The mythical quest of the narrator protagonist of Proust's masterpiece is matched by an aesthetic quest on the part of the narrator as would-be writer. Transported into the world of fairytale, confronted with artistic legends ranging from Polichinelle to Parsifal, or seduced by the reassurances of metaphysical beliefs as diverse as spiritualism and astrology, the protagonist encounters models for emulation, traps of imitation and the deceptive promises of knowledge and power. On his complementary journey, the would-be writer discovers in each of these domains suggestive models for stylistic and generic experimentation. In a carnivalesque synthesis of form and style, these will ultimately lead to a novelistic aesthetic which fuses high and low art, populaire and savant, music and text. The unity of this critically neglected spectrum of supernatural sources lies in the mythical structures, identified by theorists such as Mircea Eliade, that underlie all supernatural drives: the need to understand and create the Self; the desire for communication with the Other; and the complex interconnection of time, memory and the search for transcendence. It is here that the protagonist's and would-be writer's quests intersect and here, too, that the study reveals a conscious oscillation between the literal and metaphorical in Proust's handling of the supernatural. Magical thinking is shown by Proust to persist in the modern 'rationalistic' age, present, above all, in the perceptual transformations wrought by the work of art. What more potent a vehicle to suggest this transfigurative power than imagery of the supernatural?"--Jacket." ;
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