This volume of essays, which is dedicated to the late Richard Bales, one of the doyens of Proust studies, considers Proust's pivotal role at the threshold of modernity, between nineteenth- and twentieth-century forms of writing and thinking, between the Belle Epoque and the First World War, between tradition and innovation. More than just a temporal concept, this threshold is theorized in the volume as a liminal space where borders (geographical, artistic, personal) dissolve, where greater possibilities for artistic dialogue emerge, and where unexpected encounters (between artists, genres and disciplines) take place.
Working both backwards and forwards from the publication dates of A la recherche du temps perdu (1913-27), the seventeen essays written specially for this volume take as their focus Proust's manifold engagements with the world of modernity, as well as intermedial relations among the generations of artists before and immediately after him. Looking back to the nineteenth century, the undisputed starting point for nascent forms of modernity in Western art and literature, and a period that was uniquely formative for the young Proust, they also offer insights into inter-artistic dialogue in Surrealist and post-Surrealist painting and poetry.
Nigel Harkness is Senior Lecturer in French at Queen's University Belfast. His research interests focus on George Sand and women's writing in nineteenth-century France. He is the author of Men of their Words: The Poetics of Masculinity in George Sand's Fiction (2007) and co-editor of Dix-Neuf, the journal of the Society of Dix-Neuviemistes. Marion Schmid is Reader in French at the University of Edinburgh. She is the author of Chantal Akerman (2010), Proust dans la decadence (2008), Proust at the Movies (2005; co-authored with Martine Beugnet) and Processes of Literary Creation: Flaubert and Proust (1998).
Contents: Nigel Harkness/Marion Schmid: Introduction - Catherine O'Beirne: Proust and the Carlylean Mediation of Dante - Annick Bouillaguet : Cryptage et decryptage de la presence de Balzac dans l'ecriture d'A la recherche du temps perdu - Timothy Unwin : Proust, Flaubert, et Flaubert avant Flaubert - Marion Schmid : Proust et Robert de Montesquiou : decadence, classicisme, originalite - Alison Finch: Marcel Proust: Cultural Historian - Adam Watt: Proust, Poet of the Ordinary - Cynthia Gamble: 22 rue de Provence: Siegfried Bing's Hub of Art Nouveau Creativity and its `Rayonnement' in the World of Proust - Edward J. Hughes: On the Nation and its Culture: Proust, Barres and Daniel Halevy - Jack Jordan: Proust's Narrator: Travels in the Space-Time Continuum - Diane R. Leonard: Proust in the Fourth Dimension - Patrick O'Donovan: Proust's `grands chagrins utiles': Beyond Contingency? - Jean Milly : Levers de rideau amoureux chez Proust - Nigel Harkness: Ut sculptura poesis? Literary-Sculptural Intersections in Balzac and Proust - Clare Moran: From Maeterlinck to Masks: Theatre and Mise en Scene in the Art of Fernand Khnopff and James Ensor - Patrick McGuinness: The Language of Politics in Symbolist and Decadent Polemic: From Le Decadent to the Ecole romane - Peter Broome: Michaux and Magritte - Bernard Brun : Hommage a Richard Bales, pionnier des etudes proustiennes.