Time Sources in Proust and Glissant

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Contribution to Books

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Is it going out on a limb to read a French novelist from the Belle Époque alongside a novelist, poet and post-colonial theoretician from Martinique, when the two are separated in space by an ocean and in time by several decades? On the contrary, it is in juxtaposing these two authors that one discovers the surprising extent to which certain literary strategies employed by both intersect. In what follows, we will endeavor to demonstrate the rich and fruitful dialogue made possible by such a meeting, in particular when it comes to comparing a passage from Combray, “ouverture” of Marcel Proust’s magisterial novel À la recherche du temps perdu, whose publication began in 1913,1 with a passage from Édouard Glissant’s novel La Lézarde, which appeared in 1958, nearly a half-century later.2

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