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An Absolutely Different Life

Michael Wood: Too Proustian, 7 November 2019

Sept conférences sur Marcel Proust 
by Bernard deFallois.
Editions de Fallois, 312 pp., €20, January 2019, 978 1 03 210214 6
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Proust avant Proust Essai sur ‘Les Plaisirs et les jours’ 
by Bernard deFallois.
Les Belles Lettres, 192 pp., €21.50, May 2019, 978 2 251 44939 5
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‘Le Mystérieux Correspondant’ et autres nouvelles inédites 
by Marcel Proust, edited by Luc Fraisse.
Editions de Fallois, 174 pp., €18.50, October 2019, 978 1 03 210229 0
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... Bernard deFallois​ , a legendary French editor and publisher, died in January 2018. He worked for a long time at Hachette, and set up his own company in 1987. At one point, he was considering doing postgraduate work on Proust; he said in one of the lectures now published as Sept conférences sur Marcel Proust that he had been ‘tempted to conduct … a university exercise that one calls a thesis’, and the wording alone tells us a lot ...

Proust and the Pet Goat

Michael Wood: The Proustian Grail, 7 October 2021

Les Soixante-Quinze Feuillets: Et autres manuscrits inédits 
by Marcel Proust, edited by Nathalie Mauriac Dyer.
Gallimard, 384 pp., €21, April, 978 2 07 293171 0
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... Proust’s unpublished work does not exist,’ Bernard deFallois wrote in 1954. Provocative words, since he was introducing a whole volume of such material, and two years earlier had brought out Jean Santeuil, an unfinished novel Proust worked on between 1895 and 1899. De Fallois was trying to suggest, with a little too much bravado, that all Proust’s writing, early and late, published and unpublished, should be considered part of his great novel, À la recherche du temps perdu ...

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