It has officially been over a year since I first started Proust’s Le Temps Perdu and amazingly, have the last volume to finish! This is not do to lack of interest or Proust’s writing skills, merely that Proust is difficult, temperamental, brilliant and boring all in one sentence. He is all encompassing and drives me crazy. There is no way to not start thinking like him after the first hundred pages.
But he will have to wait. I’m still working my way through Gogol’s short stories, which basically is like reading Dostoevsky, but with a sense of humor and better writing skills. Although the devil only makes appearances in small villages in Ukraine, the scenes of the Russian middle class are equally entertaining in their absurdities.
However, because it is Sunday night, Gogol will have to wait. Masterpiece Theater is on and it is the final episode of the new version of Jane Austen’s Emma. I may be a bibliophile, but there is nothing better than a period adaptation of a novel, complete with British accents. [However stay far far away from the 2006 Lady Chatterley’s Lover, which made Proust look fast-paced, while the male lead looked like Frankenstein’s monster and the supposedly good sex scenes (this was a French production) were as awkward and stilted as any kind of love scene with Frankenstein might be. Also who cuts to scenes of fields and flowers as the “suggestive” imagery of sex? Isn’t that a little medieval?]