The French Third Republic through the Narrative Experience
The approach to social developments in literary works is not intended to provide a documented representation of a particular historical and political moment, which would serve later as a serious archived leverage for history. However, the writer's sensibility is able to capture in his work the inner meaning of the past events to provide a certain testimony of the historical progress. In this paper we will focus on Proust’s novel In Search of Lost Time in order to extract its subtle vision of some historical moments during the French Third Republic in the light of the experience of the French society and the mentalities that formed public opinion. We will focus notably on the dual function of history that can be seen in Proust - first as an imaginary content that aestheticizes and idealizes history, and second as a conflict that in a particular historical moment based its prestige on culture, although each time the history was included in a different conception.
Keywords: historical narration, the French Third Republic.
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