Bill's Reviews > Within a Budding Grove

Within a Budding Grove by Marcel Proust
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M_50x66
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Jul 04, 12


I loved the first one, I loved this one, too. I found it to be a rougher slog at times (Swann's romance in Swann's Way is pretty gripping stuff compared to most of this work), but I also found it much more observational and quotable. I've got a wall at work full of quotes from this book. Here's a sampling:

"...the mind is subject to external influences, and the medium which alters it if we immerse it therein is a change of circumstances, or a new surroundings."

"The young nobleman who, like Saint-Loup, has a mistress acquires the habit, when he takes her out to dine, of carrying in his pocket the valerian drops which she may need, of ordering the waiter, firmly and with no hint of sarcasm, to see that he shuts the doors quietly and does not put any damp moss on the table, so as to spare his companion those little ailments which he himself has never felt, which compose for him an occult world in whose reality she has taught him to believe, ailments for which he now feels sympathy without needing to understand them, for which he will still feel sympathy when women other than she are the sufferers."

"...just as it is not the desire to become famous but the habit of being industrious that enables us to produce a finished work, so it is not the activity of the present moment but wise reflections from the past that help us to safeguard the future."

"To strip our pleasures of imagination is to reduce them to their own dimensions, that is to say to nothing."

There's a lot of gold here about how the mind works.
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