Proust Quotes

Quotes tagged as "proust" Showing 1-30 of 80
Marcel Proust
“Let us leave pretty women to men with no imagination.”
Marcel Proust, The Captive / The Fugitive

Marcel Proust
“I wished to see storms only on those coasts where they raged with most violence...”
Marcel Proust, Within a Budding Grove

Marcel Proust
“But genius, and even great talent, springs less from seeds of intellect and social refinement superior to those of other people than from the faculty of transforming and transposing them. To heat a liquid with an electric lamp requires not the strongest lamp possible, but one of which the current can cease to illuminate, can be diverted so as to give heat instead of light. To mount the skies it is not necessary to have the most powerful of motors, one must have a motor which, instead of continuing to run along the earth's surface, intersecting with a vertical line the horizontal line which it began by following, is capable of converting its speed into lifting power. Similarly, the men who produce works of genius are not those who live in the most delicate atmosphere, whose conversation is the most brilliant or their culture the most extensive, but those who have had the power, ceasing suddenly to live only for themselves, to transform their personality into a sort of mirror, in such a way that their life, however mediocre it may be socially and even, in a sense, intellectually, is reflected by it, genius consisting in reflecting power and not int he intrinsic quality of the scene reflected.”
Marcel Proust, Within a Budding Grove, Part 2

Marcel Proust
“I cannot express the uneasiness caused in me by this intrusion of mystery and beauty into a room I had at last filled with myself to the point of paying no more attention to the room than to that self. The anesthetizing influence of habit having ceased, I would begin to have thoughts, and feelings, and they are such sad things.”
Marcel Proust, Swann’s Way

Marcel Proust
“I have friends wherever there are companies of trees, wounded but not vanquished, which huddle together with touching obstinancy to implore an inclement and pitiless sky.”
Marcel Proust, Swann’s Way

William Gaddis
“Reading Proust isn't just reading a book, it's an experience and you can't reject an experience.”
William Gaddis, The Recognitions

Lev Grossman
“The idea of some kind of objectively constant, universal literary value is seductive. It feels real. It feels like a stone cold fact that In Search of Lost Time, by Marcel Proust, is better than A Shore Thing, by Snooki. And it may be; Snooki definitely has more one-star reviews on Amazon. But if literary value is real, no one seems to be able to locate it or define it very well. We’re increasingly adrift in a grey void of aesthetic relativism.”
Lev Grossman

Marcel Proust
“...the nose is generally the organ in which stupidity is most readily displayed.”
Marcel Proust, Sodom and Gomorrah

Marcel Proust
“No doubt, few people understand either the purely subjective nature of the phenomenon of love, or how it creates a supplementary person who is quite different from the one who bears our beloved’s name in the outside world, and is mostly formed from elements within ourselves. So there are few who see anything natural in the disproportionate dimensions which we come to perceive in a person who is not the same as the one they see.”
Marcel Proust

Christopher Hitchens
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery? (Just to give you an idea, Proust's reply was 'To be separated from Mama.') I think that the lowest depth of misery ought to be distinguished from the highest pitch of anguish. In the lower depths come enforced idleness, sexual boredom, and/or impotence. At the highest pitch, the death of a friend or even the fear of the death of a child.”
Christopher Hitchens, Hitch 22: A Memoir

Samuel Beckett
“Habit is the ballast that chains the dog to his vomit.”
Samuel Beckett

Garrison Keillor
“I feel like a blind man searching a dark room for a pair of black socks that aren’t there.”
Garrison Keillor

Marcel Proust
“The belief that a person has a share in an unknown life to which his or her love may win us admission is, of all the prerequisites of love, the one which it values most highly and which makes it set little store by all the rest.”
Marcel Proust

“Yet the Narrator’s quest is not only for his own identity and vocation. He seeks an understanding of art, sexuality and worldly and political affairs: he is a snoop and a voyeur; he comments and classifies; his taxonomic impulse makes the novel appear to be a vast compendium, replete with burrowing wasps and bedsteads, military strategies, stereoscopes, asparagus and aeroplanes.”
Adam A. Watt, The Cambridge Introduction to Marcel Proust

Marcel Proust
“Recalling, some time later, what I had felt at the time, I distinguished the impression of having been held for a moment in her mouth, myself, naked, without any of the social attributes which belonged equally to her other playmates and, when she used my surname, to my parents, accessories of which her lips - by the effort she made, a little after her father's manner, to articulate the words to which she wished to give a special emphasis - had the air of stripping, of divesting me, like the skin from a fruit of which one can swallow only the pulp, while her glance, adapting itself to the same new degree of intimacy as her speech, fell on me also more directly and testified to the consciousness, the pleasure, even the gratitude that it felt by accompanying itself with a smile.”
marcel proust

Marcel Proust
“You're as strong as the Pont Neuf. You'll live to bury us all!”
Marcel Proust, The Guermantes Way

Marcel Proust
“The variations of the Duchess's judgment spared no one, except her
husband. He alone had never been in love with her, in him she had
always felt an iron character, indifferent to the caprices that she
displayed, contemptuous of her beauty, violent, of a will that would
never bend, the sort under which alone nervous people can find
tranquillity.”
Marcel Proust, The Guermantes Way

Marcel Proust
“I loved her; I was sorry not to have had the time and the inspiration to insult her, to do her some injury, to force her to keep some memory of me.”
Marcel Proust

Marcel Proust
“These new words were heard by my love; they persuaded it that the next day would not be different from what all the other days had been; that Gilberte’s feeling for me, already too old to be able to change, was indifference; that in my friendship with Gilberte, I was the only one who loved. “It’s true,” my love answered, “there’s nothing more to be done with this friendship, it won’t change.” And so, the very next day (or waiting for a public holiday if there was one coming up soon, or an anniversary, or the New Year perhaps, one of those days which are not like the others, when time makes a fresh start by rejecting the heritage of the past, by not accepting the legacy of its sorrows) I would ask Gilberte to give up our old friendship and lay the foundations of a new one.”
Marcel Proust

Garrison Keillor
“I feel like a blind man searching a dark room.
(Old Man Alone on Labor Day Weekend -- blog post)”
Garrison Keillor

Paul Auster
“The past, to repeat the words of Proust, is hidden in some material object. To wander about in the world, then, is also to wander about in ourselves.”
Paul Auster, The Invention of Solitude

Marcel Proust
“There was a mild, damp wind blowing. It was weather I was quite familiar with; and a sudden feeling and presentiment ran through me: that New Year’s Day was not a day that differed from any other, not the first day of a new life when I could remake the acquaintance of Gilberte with the die still uncast, as though on the very first day of Creation when no past yet existed, as though the sorrows she had sometimes caused me had been wiped out, and with them all the future ones they might portend, as though I lived in a new world in which nothing remained of the old except one thing: my wish that Gilberte would love me. I realized that, since my heart yearned in this way for the redesign of a universe which had not satisfied it, this meant that my heart had not changed; and I could see there was no reason why Gilberte’s should have changed either. I sensed that, though it was a new friendship for me, it would not be a new friendship for her, just as no years are ever separated from each other by a frontier, and that though[…]“it was a new friendship for me, it would not be a new friendship for her, just as no years are ever separated from each other by a frontier, and that though we may put different names to them, they remain beyond the reach of our yearnings, unaware of these and unaffected by them. Though I might dedicate this year to Gilberte, though I might try to imprint upon New Year’s Day the special notion I had made up for it, as a religion is superimposed on the blind workings of nature, it was in vain: I was aware that this day did not know it was called New Year’s Day, and that it was coming to an end in the twilight in a way that was not unknown to me. What I recognized, what I sensed “in that mild wind blowing about the Morris column with its posters, was the reappearance of former times, with the never-ending unchangingness of their substance, their familiar dampness, their ignorant fluidity.”
Marcel Proust

“Another book out of Mexico which interests me is Ivan Illich's Deschooling Society. Do you know it?' I inquired.
'Yes, and I too have a high opinion of the thesis of the book. Illich is a man with one good idea. I see you have here Deleuze's Proust and Signs. What do you think of it?'
'I consider it the best book about Proust I have ever read.”
Simeon Wade, Foucault in California [A True Story—Wherein the Great French Philosopher Drops Acid in the Valley of Death]

Arnold Hauser
“Aesthetic culture implies a way of life marked by uselessness and superfluousness, that is to say, the embodiment of romantic resignation and passivity. But it outdoes romanticism; it not only renounces life for the sake of art, it seeks for the justification of life in art itself. It regards the world of art as the only real compensation for the disappointments of life, as the genuine realization and consummation of an existence that is intrinsically incomplete and inarticulate. But this not only means that life seems more beautiful and more conciliatory when clothed in art, but that, as Proust, the last great impressionist and aesthetic hedonist, thought, it only grows into significant reality in memory, vision and the aesthetic experience. We live our experiences with the greatest intensity not when we encounter men and things in reality—the ‘time’ and the present of these experiences are always ‘lost’—but when we ‘recover time’, when we are no longer the actors but the spectators of our life, when we create or enjoy works of art, in other words, when we remember. Here, in Proust, art takes possession of what Plato had denied it: ideas—the true remembrance of the essential forms of being.”
Arnold Hauser, The Social History of Art: Volume 4: Naturalism, Impressionism, The Film Age

Céleste Albaret
“speaking of Proust: “The fact is he didn’t care much for children – which is strange when you think about how he had an almost religious feeling for his own childhood. ‘I like looking at children’, he used to say, ‘but not spending time with them”
Céleste Albaret, Monsieur Proust

Marcel Proust
“The unknown element in the lives of other people is like that of nature, which each fresh scientific discovery merely reduces but does not abolish.”
Marcel Proust, In Search of Lost Time

Kingsley Amis
“I went into the dining-room, where four covered pots of soup stood on the table, and moved over to the bookshelves to the left of the fireplace. Here I kept two or three dozen works on architecture and sculpture, and a hundred or so plain texts of the standard English and French poets, stopping chronologically well short of our own day: Mallarmé and Lord de Tabley are my most modern versifiers. I have no novelists, finding theirs a puny and piffling art, one that, even at its best, can render truthfully no more than a few minor parts of the total world it pretends to take as its field of reference. A man has only to feel some emotion, any emotion, anything differentiated at all, and spend a minute speculating how this would be rendered in a novel—not just the average novel, but the work of a Stendhal or a Proust—to grasp the pitiful inadequacy of all prose fiction to the task it sets itself. By comparison, the humblest productions of the visual arts are triumphs of portrayal, both of the matter and of the spirit, while verse—lyric verse, at least—is equidistant from fiction and life, and is autonomous.”
Kingsley Amis, The Green Man

Marcel Proust
“The words that passed between the girls of the little band and myself were not of any interest; they were, moreover, but few, broken by long spells of silence on my part. All of which did not prevent me from finding, in listening to them when the spoke to me, as much pleasure as in gazing at them, in discovering in the voice of each one of them a brightly colored picture. It was with ecstasy that I caught their pipings.”
Marcel Proust, Within a Budding Grove

Marcel Proust
“The words that passed between the girls of the little band and myself were not of any interest; they were, moreover, but few, broken by long spells of silence on my part. All of which did not prevent me from finding, in listening to them when they spoke to me, as much pleasure as in gazing at them, in discovering in the voice of each one of them a brightly colored picture. It was with ecstasy that I caught their pipings.”
Marcel Proust, Within a Budding Grove

Patricia Highsmith
“It was important that the objects of love be nothing but recipients, he thought again. Love was an outgoing thing, a gift that one should not expect to be returned. Stendhall must have said that, Proust certainly, using other words: a piece of wisdom his eyes had passed over reading.”
Patricia Highsmith, Those Who Walk Away

« previous 1 3