1.13.2010


We're starting part 2 of Swann's Way, Swann in Love.  This is set further back in time, a re-telling by the Narrator (second-hand) of what someone told him about Swann's life.  If you want to read in French & English, try it here.  We can increase the page count if you're making good time.

I haven't yet found any analysis of the unnamed fisherman in the straw hat. 
The Pont-Vieux led to a tow-path which, at this point, would be overhung in summer by the bluish foliage of a hazel, under which a fisherman in a straw hat seemed to have taken root. At Combray, where I knew everyone, and could always detect the blacksmith or grocer’s boy through his disguise of a beadle’s uniform or chorister’s surplice, this fisherman was the only person whom I was never able to identify. He must have known my family, for he used to raise his hat when we passed; and then I would always be just on the point of asking his name, when some one would make a sign to me to be quiet, or I would frighten the fish.
So.  Proust wrote Impressions on Riding in an Automobile about a car trip to Caen, where he saw the steeples shifting at Saint-Etienne & Saint-Pierre.  The pertinent part of the article later became the boy Marcel's writing fragment, the one he jots down in the carriage. See the page 437 preview in Carter's biography at this link. (Scroll down).

More analysis of the Martinville fragment in this learned essay (Ruskin, Proust, and the Art of Failure). (Use Ctrl F to find the word "Martinville").

Oh, I've found someone hosting an online reading of Proust. They're doing 10 pages per day, but Abrams posts some excellent research and people's comments are thoughtful, like yours. Try this one for size....  Nice Moss post.

Check the blog for steeple & Vivonne illustrations. See you soon!