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The Captive (Remembrance of Things Past, 9)

By Marcel Proust (Author)
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Item description for The Captive (Remembrance of Things Past, 9) by Marcel Proust...

Outline ReviewMarcel Proust whiled away the first half of his life as a self-conscious aesthete and social climber. The second half he spent in the creation of the mighty roman-fleuve that is Remembrance of Things Past, memorializing his own dandyism and parvenu hijinks even as he revealed their essential hollowness. Proust begins, of course, at the beginning--with the earliest childhood perceptions and sorrows. Then, over several thousand pages, he retraces the course of his own adolescence and adulthood, democratically dividing his experiences among the narrator and a sprawling cast of characters. Who else has ever decanted life into such ornate, knowing, wrought-iron sentences? Who has subjected love to such merciless microscopy, discriminating between the tiniest variations of desire and self-delusion? Who else has produced a grief-stricken record of time's erosion that can also make you laugh for entire pages? The answer to all these questions is: nobody.

Product Description
In "The Captive Part I", Marcel's obsessive love for Albertine makes her virtually a captive in his Paris apartment. This set of three cassettes continues the Naxos Audiobooks Proust cycle, following on from the last title in the series "Sodom and Gomorrah Part II."

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Item Specifications...

Format: Abridged,   Audiobook
Studio: Naxos Audiobooks
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 5.52" Width: 4.36" Height: 1.37"
Weight:   0.52 lbs.
Binding  Audio Cassette
Publisher   Naxos Audiobooks
ISBN  9626346906  
ISBN13  9789626346907  
UPC  730099019040  

Availability  0 units.

More About Marcel Proust

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Marcel Proust was born in the Parisian suburb of Auteuil on July 10, 1871. His father, Adrien Proust, was a doctor celebrated for his work in epidemiology; his mother, Jeanne Weil, was a stockbroker's daughter of Jewish descent. He lived as achild in the family home on Boulevard Malesherbes in Paris, but spent vacations with his aunt and uncle in the town of Illiers near Chartres, where the Prousts had lived for generations and which became the model for the Combray of his great novel. (In recent years it was officially renamed Illiers-Combray.) Sickly from birth, Marcel was subject from the age of nine to violent attacks of asthma, and although he did a year of military service as a young man and studied law and political science, his invalidism disqualified him from an active professional life.
During the 1890s Proust contributed sketches to Le Figaro and to a short-lived magazine, "Le Banquet," founded by some of his school friends in 1892. "Pleasures and Days," a collection of his stories, essays, and poems, was published in 1896. In his youth Proust led an active social life, penetrating the highest circles of wealth and aristocracy. Artistically and intellectually, his influences included the aesthetic criticism of John Ruskin, the philosophy of Henri Bergson, the music of Wagner, and the fiction of Anatole France (on whom he modeled his character Bergotte). An affair begun in 1894 with the composer and pianist Reynaldo Hahn marked the beginning of Proust's often anguished acknowledgment of his homosexuality.
Following the publication of Emile Zola's letter in defense of Colonel Dreyfus in 1898, Proust became 'the first Dreyfusard, ' as he later phrased it. By the time Dreyfus was finally vindicated of charges of treason, Proust's social circles had been torn apart by the anti-Semitism and political hatreds stirred up by the affair.
Proust was very attached to his mother, and after her death in 1905 he spent some time in a sanitorium. His health worsened progressively, and he withdrew almost completely from society and devoted himself to writing. Proust's early work had done nothing to establish his reputation as a major writer. In an unfinished novel, "Jean Santeuil" (not published until 1952), he laid some of the groundwork for "In Search of Lost Time," and in "Against Sainte-Beuve," written in 1908-09, he stated as his aesthetic credo: 'A book is the product of a different self from the one we manifest in our habits, in society, in our vices. If we mean to try to understand this self it is only in our inmost depths, by endeavoring to reconstruct it there, that the quest can be achieved.' He appears to have begun work on his long masterpiece sometime around 1908, and the first volume, "Swann's Way," was published in 1913.

In 1919 the second volume, "Within a Budding Grove," won the Goncourt Prize, bringing Proust great and instantaneous fame. Two subsequent sections--The "Guermantes Way" (1920-21) and "Sodom and Gomorrah" (1921)--appeared in his lifetime. (Of the depiction of homosexuality in the latter, his friend Andre Gide complained: 'Will you never portray this form of Eros for us in the aspect of youth and beauty?') The remaining volumes were published following Proust's death on November 18, 1922: "The Captive" in 1923, "The Fugitive" in 1925, and "Time Regained" in 1927."

Marcel Proust lived in Auteuil. Marcel Proust was born in 1871 and died in 1922.

Marcel Proust has published or released items in the following series...

  1. In Search of Lost Time
  2. Modern Library (Paperback)
  3. Penguin Books: Great Ideas
  4. Proust Complete

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Product Categories

1Books > Audiocassettes > Authors, A-Z > ( P ) > Proust, Marcel
2Books > Audiocassettes > General
3Books > Audiocassettes > Literature & Fiction > General
4Books > Audiocassettes > Literature & Fiction > Literary Classics
5Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Authors, A-Z > ( P ) > Proust, Marcel
6Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Classics
7Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Classics
8Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General
9Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > British > 19th Century
10Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > British > 20th Century

Reviews - What do customers think about The Captive (Remembrance of Things Past, 9)?

Note: this review is of Heuet's adaptation, not the original book  Oct 17, 2006
Stephane Heuet, Remembrance of Things Past: Within a Budding Grove, vol. I (ComicsLit, 2000)

Heuet continues his ambitious adaptation of Proust's Remembrance of Things Past with the first part of Within a Budding Grove. Our narrator is growing up, and the focus of this volume is a trip to the seaside, meeting some people, getting in touch with old friends, always silently reflecting on both his memories of the past (of course) and the social consciousness of the world around him. If you liked the first one, you'll like this one as well. ***
The Holy Grail  Aug 10, 2006
Very well....I'm finally, after years of putting it off, writing a review of a work of Art that can't be reviewed in any meaningful sense of the term, a work of Art that approaches the sacred. As another reviewer puts it, if you think you have read literature with "depths" before, this opus will make ANYTHING you've ever read seem, in comparison, like one of those vapid books one picks up at airports during layovers. It is a work by which other novels, poems, paintings are to be judged rather than the other way around. In fact, after reading Proust, one can immediately tell if other "great writers" have read him almost from the start. Recent Booker Prize winning John Banville's The Sea is a good example of this.

The first time I read this work, about ten years ago, it was the ONLY thing I did, so enraptured was I. For a month, all I did was lie on my bed or, alternately, on the sofa downstairs and read, putting a dash mark at the end of one of the two-page paragraphs when I had to get up to eat or to check the mail or to feed my dog or to answer the phone or to get some shuteye, and then dive back in as soon as possible. - I don't use the term "dive" lightly - That's the only metaphor that comes close to expressing what it's like to read this book. You dive in and plunge deeper and deeper than you thought any Art could ever take you and, if you make it to the end, arise out of the deep cadences of philosophical reverie that constitute Proust's spellbinding meditations on love and time to behold a world rich and strange. - Proust truly does change your life. One never really recovers from reading him.

A few comments on what some of the other (serious) reviewers have said: 1) A La Recherche du Temps Perdu is not untranslatable and I don't know why exactly the English translation wasn't In Search of Lost Time instead of Remembrance of Things Past, taken, of course from the Shakespearian sonnet. But there it is. 2) I am in complete agreement with the reviewer who avers that unless you have been in love and suffered, which critic Harold Bloom remarks, commenting on Proust, means, eventually, everyone who has ever been in love, you will miss Proust's deepest apercus and regard them (as one reviewer does) as "silly."

I'm not sure what else I can say. I've probably go on too much already. If you are a true lover of Art in its highest sense, please pick up this Holy Grail of literature, even if you are intimidated, as many reviewers admit to being at first. For, as Proust says:

"Thus, it is in states of mind destined not to last that we make the irrevocable decisions of our lives."

Reading Proust is one of these decisions you won't regret
A Worthy Investment  Jul 12, 2006
Yes, it is long. Yes, the sentences are complex. Nonetheless, this novel is a worthy investment of one's efforts, because it isolates events that are so innately human that anyone who reads this novel will relate to it. Beyond just reading it because one feels obligated to do so as bibliophile, enjoy the greatest achievement of 20th-century France because it is witty, insightful, daring, and occasionally laugh-out-loud funny.

I recommend reading this novel quickly, rather than being bogged down by details that result in confusion or distraction. I read the novel in 15 weeks in a class at UC Berkeley, and have concluded that it must be read twice--once, to understand the plot and big ideas, and a second time to linger over the concepts that piqued one's interest the most. However, even if only reading it once, it is worth an investment of one's time and emotion.
my favorite book  Feb 15, 2006
so i was a berkeley english major who needed a class....i just happend to wander into a course on Proust.

it is my favorite book.

it is not light reading, it is for those who want to expericence one of the great novels in the cannon.

I ended up reading the first three volumes.
Swans way left me with satisfation. It is a senory trip in which insecurities and obession exsist without judment. It deals with much of the human psyche in all its forms.

As a lower income Latino male i could still find the univerals truths that bond me to other works that are outside of my personal experience.

It is a work that exsist outside of time, in constant senory experience.

Read it... then reread it.
Learning to swim-- my first Proust reading experience  Oct 21, 2005
Some time ago, I received the Vintage three-volume box set version of Remembrance as a gift. I had rashly mentioned to a friend that I wanted to read Proust and he took me at my word-- the heavy set arriving by mail and scaring me half to death. It took me a long time to get around to reading it, but I finally summoned up my courage and took down the first volume.

I have many thoughts on the books, and the experience of reading them was not always easy. I will summarize, however, by saying that I believe that I was amply rewarded for making the time and space free to tackle this piece.

It took me quite a while to let myself get into the prose. Although I found it immediately beautiful, haunting even, I struggled over the long complex sentences and the unusual structure. The only advice that I can give to the potential first-time reader is to stop trying to catch everything and let yourself swim along. Eventually if you stop fighting the structure, it really starts to work and you are drawn along with it to the point where you no longer experience it as difficult.

Where is the reward for the reader? There is a passage in the book where Proust is discussing how time flows in any given life. He argues that in order to capture time passing, the novelist generally is given to "wildly accelerating the beat of the pendulum, to transport the reader in a couple of minutes over ten, or twenty, or even thirty years." What I found the most amazing on my first reading of Swann's Way and Within a Budding Grove was that remarkable sense of time in life that Proust is able to portray. He uses more than the wild leaps and jumps that he attributes to his generic novelist. He condenses time, extends it, shortens it and rearranges it. The array of memories along this life is beautiful, and the more beautiful for being so clearly anchored in a particular place in the life of the characters. I am not sure where he is going with all these people-- I will need to read the other books to find out. Still, I was actually content with these two books as a separate reading experience for this element of time passing alone.

I think that on balance if I had bought these books for myself, I would have chosen the Lydia Davis translation. This is based on conversations with friends who were reading the Davis translation at the same time that I was reading this edition. It sounds as though it is fresher, and more readable. However, I found this edition much more accessible than I had feared. Either the Montcrief edition has much less gingerbread prose than generally held, or Kilmarten really did a remarkable job of smoothing it out. I needed to arm myself with a dictionary while reading, since the two of them used some very obscure and/or archaic vocabulary. Although this was occasionally annoying, there were also times when I felt as though less specificity would have hurt the images that were being described.

Recommended, but not lightly.

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