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occ's avatar

What's up with the "Proust questionaire" in every issue of Vanity Fair?

Asked by occ (4083points) November 27th, 2007

Okay, embarassing for a comparative literature major to admit, but I’ve never actually read any Proust. In every issue of Vanity Fair magazine, the last page is called the “Proust Questionaire” and a different famous person in each issue is asked to answer the same questions, such as, “what is your idea of perfect happiness,” “what is your greatest extravagance,” etc. Can anyone explain the Proust reference to me?

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2 Answers

sferik's avatar

From George Loper:

“The young Marcel was asked to fill out questionnaires at two social events: one when he was 13, another when he was 20. Proust did not invent this party game; he is simply the most extraordinary person to respond to them.”

muizus's avatar

he made the questionnaire famous, several weekend-supplements here in Europe use it on well-known people. i worked through the whole french text during a very anxious period in my life. it took me about six months, reading every day. at times his long, elliptical sentences really calmed me down. like letting yourself be carried away. of course he was himself a very anxious person, writing ultimately became his only reason for living – it made his existence bearable. Same with Kafka in my opinion.

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