In the Beginning Marcel Proust
Edited by Luciano Pellegrini
One hundred years after Marcel Proust’s death, this book collects five essays on the great writer published by Francis Orlando between 1973 and 2010, along with the transcript of one of his lectures on the Recherche. A posthumous volume that contains,in the author’s words, “what little I have written about Proust.”
An understatement, given the singularity of the critical gaze and the depth of the interpretative slant that emerge from these Orlandian writings. First read at the age of eighteen and reread constantly until the end, Proust appears to us in these pages as an “initiation reading” for Orlando: initiation not only to the educated life and self-understanding, but also to the critical intelligence that marked his entire oeuvre.
Carlo Ginzburg’s preface enriches the volume by providing a cross section of this intellectual history and by inviting us to listen to Marcel Proust.