Sociolinguistic Studies, Vol 12, No 1 (2018)

Conversational dynamics in the ‘Roman d’Albertine’ (‘Albertine’s love story’) – Marcel Proust, À la recherche du temps perdu (In search of lost time)

Geneviève Henrot-Sostero
Issued Date: 6 Nov 2018

Abstract


À la recherche du temps perdu (In search of lost time), the famous novel sequence by the contemporary French writer Marcel Proust, weaves thousands of conversations between its characters, which often last through the years. In particular, as love speech implies a deep emotion, all its words are carefully kept in mind over time. The narrator, who pays the sharpest attention to all kinds of interaction between human beings, illustrates by means of many convincing side comments and inner speeches, how conversation works, not only in a single scene, but also from one scene to the next, throughout its history. And the stability and longevity of Proustian characters extend those conversational relationships to a good deal of the novel, so that it seems most interesting to analyse the concept of conversational history in such a massive corpus. Specifically, we shall pay attention to the historical conversation between the Narrator and his beloved Albertine, from both macro-discursive and micro-discursive dynamics, to get a deeper insight on its powerful narrative function in the love story.

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DOI: 10.1558/sols.33362

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