In The Captive, Proust’s narrator describes living in his mother’s Paris apartment with his lover, Albertine, and subsequently falling out of love with her.
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About the Author
Proust was born in Auteuil (the southern sector of Paris's then-rustic 16th arrondissement) at the home of his great-uncle, two months after the Treaty of Frankfurt formally ended the Franco-Prussian War. His birth took place during the violence that surrounded the suppression of the Paris Commune, and his childhood corresponds with the consolidation of the French Third Republic. Much of Remembrance of Things Past concerns the vast changes, most particularly the decline of the aristocracy and the rise of the middle classes, that occurred in France during the Third Republic and the fin de siècle. Proust's father, Achille Adrien Proust, was a famous doctor and epidemiologist, responsible for studying and attempting to remedy the causes and movements of cholera through Europe and Asia; he was the author of many articles and books on medicine and hygiene. Proust's mother, Jeanne Clémence Weil, was the daughter of a rich and cultured Jewish family. Her father was a banker. She was highly literate and well-read. Her letters demonstrate a well-developed sense of humour, and her command of English was sufficient for her to provide the necessary impetus to her son's later attempts to translate John Ruskin. By the age of nine, Proust had had his first serious asthma attack, and thereafter he was considered by himself, his family and his friends as a sickly child. Proust spent long holidays in the village of Illiers. This village, combined with aspects of the time he spent at his great-uncle's house in Auteuil became the model for the fictional town of Combray, where some of the most important scenes of Remembrance of Things Past take place.
Date of Birth:July 10, 1871
Date of Death:November 18, 1922
Place of Birth:Auteuil, near Paris, France
Place of Death:Paris, France