These essays represent a vital episode in the intellectual development of Proust - without them, a full understanding of "A la Recherche du Temps Perdu" would be incomplete. The best essays are the ones that date from 1908 - when Proust, aged 37, already felt that his life was drawing to a close, and the urgency of writing his masterpiece was fully upon him. Although these essays mostly accuse the then famous critic Sainte-Beuve of being, among other things, an incompetent judge of Baudelaire, Stendhal, Flaubert and Balzac, collectively they make a robust statement of Proust's overriding aesthetic beliefs and concerns. Through them he defines the task of the artist as releasing the creative energies of past experiences from the hidden store of the unconscious - the aesthetic that was to lie at the heart of his great novel.
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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, 1994. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110140185259