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Proust, Class, and Nation$
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Edward J. Hughes

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199609864

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199609864.001.0001

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(p.267) Postscript
Proust, Class, and Nation

Edward J. Hughes

Oxford University Press

The Postscript draws out how Proust’s scepticism about trenchant political positions frequently manifests itself as a playful, ironic working with ideological issues and generates what the critic Jacques Dubois refers to as an amorous sociology. The chapter shows how in this eccentric discipline which merges analytical method and desire, the study of sociality in the Recherche often forms an object of erotic fascination. The chapter also looks back at early Proust texts on Boulangism, fashion, and the politics of cultural taste and shows an author not only reflecting on, and connecting with, populist taste but also curious to understand the links between power and sociality. The chapter concludes that A la recherche du temps perdu is, in a very real, material sense, a product of its time, resonating with, and needing, the social antagonisms of the Third Republic.

Keywords:   sociality, desire, irony, populism, power

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