Marcel Proust at 150

“Long books, when read, are usually overpraised, because the reader wishes to convince others and himself that he has not wasted his time.” E. M. Forster’s notes in his commonplace book were written in reference to Richardson’s Clarissa, but his point may equally resonate with readers familiar with Marcel Proust’s À la Recherche du temps perdu (In Search of Lost Time). As Proustophiles the world over commemorate the 150th anniversary of the author’s birth on July 10 and look ahead to the centenary of his death in November next year, the time is ripe to reflect on Proust and his writing and to take stock of his status in contemporary literature and culture.

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