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Guermantes Way: Pt. 1 [Hardcover]

Marcel Proust , Scott Moncrieff

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Book Description

Dec 1957
Large format paper back for easy reading. Third Volume of the 'In Search of Lost Time' (AKA Remembrance of things past) masterpeice of modernist literature
--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Marcel Proust (1871-1922) is now generally viewed as the greatest French novelist and perhaps the greatest European novelist of the 20th century. He lived much of his later life as a reclusive semi-invalid in a sound-proofed flat in Paris, giving himself over entirely to writing IN SEARCH OF LOST TIME. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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The Guermantes Way was published by Gallimard in two parts, in 1920 and 1921 respectively. Read the first page
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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superior Translation of Proust's Masterpiece 22 Dec 2004
By Christopher C. Tamigi - Published on Amazon.com
This is the third volume in the new English translation of Proust's "A la ricerche de temp perdu," completed in 2001 under the guise of General Editor Christopher Prendergast, in which each volume is written by a different author. This groundbreaking new edition is the first entirely original English translation of Proust's novel since C. K. Scott Moncrieff first adapted it into English back in the Edwardian era (The 1993 Modern Library edition by D. J. Enright is a revision of the old Scott/Kilmartin translation which does little more than bring it in line with the current French edition of the novel).

This new translation is said to be more loyal to the French original. It is also said flow better and be more readable. Whereas I can't vouche for either of the above claims myself, since I don't read French and this is my first time tackling the novel, I can tell you that I am almost finished with Mark Treharne's translation of "The Guermantes Way" and I'm greatly enjoying it. In fact, I find it more interesting that the first two volumes (which I read in the Modern Library translation). I think this is due not only to the new subject matter but also the more readable translation.

This edition also contains invaluable endnotes explaining Proust's cultural references about people, places, and things alluded to in the text which are probably unfamiliar to the contemporary anglophone reader. These endnotes were truly enlighting and added to my enjoyment of the book. For instance, I can't imagine reading this volume without the account of the Dreyfus affair (a divisive political controversy involving the military and anti-semitism oft discussed in the fin de siecle French salons depicted by Proust) and its players.

In this volume, the snobbish young narrator first begins to enter the Parisian high society of the Guermantes. There he renews his friendship with Robert de Saint-Loup, the dashing young army officer he met in Balbec, and Saint-Loup's great aunt, Mme. de Villeparisis, who is writing her memoirs. He also encounters Saint-Loup's uncle once again, the enigmatic M. de Charlus who offers to be the narrator's mentor in his quest to conquer high society. The narrator also makes the acquaintance of the beautiful Duchesse de Guermantes, a woman who long fascinating him due to her surnames romantic association with the countryside where he spent his childhood summers. Furthermore, in this volume, the narrator first becomes intimately acquainted with Albertine, the great love of his life.

Perhaps my favorite passage was a long description of the narrator's first visit to Mme. Villeparisis salon, of all the interesting characters he meets there, and of the conversations that take place. Proust's painstaking description truly summons up this world which seized to exist over a century ago for the reader.

If you are interesting in tackling "the Guermantes Way" I recommend you get your hands on this superior translation.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Decent Translation 17 Nov 2011
By CameronS - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This 1990's translation of Marcel Proust's masterpiece Remembrance of Things Past reflects the world's constant movement toward simplicity. I find that Proust's work loses some if its magic through modern attempts to streamline it. Those who praise this new translation say that in the original French, despite its structural complexity Proust's language is more straightforward than the Moncrieff-Kilmartin Translation from the 1920s would suggest. If this is true then I applaud this effort in bringing the work closer to Proust's original vision to the English speaking world, but if it's the case that these new translators are simply trying to make Proust somehow more accessible to a wider audience, then they have failed. Proust's strange visions and insights shine brighter and ring truer in the original translation's slightly more eloquent language and become a bit more common through the attempt to make them more "readable." Richness of meaning should not be sacrificed for clarity. Vladimir Nobokov said that the superficial reader wouldn't get past the first ten pages of the 3,000 page long Remembrance of Things Past. I have a sneaking suspicion that this new translation makes the attempt to remedy that fact, which, needless to say, is a fool's errand.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent edition of classic novel 26 April 2009
By pinesy - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
The Guermantes Way (Modern Library 213) There's nothing to add regarding this great Proust classic after eighty years. The delivery of this fine edition was perfect. I couldn't find it elsewhere. I wanted it in this edition because I have the other six volumes also. Modern Library did a god job of seemingly compressing all 800 to 900 pages of each into a fairly thin book.
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