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Crystallization And The Tragedy Of Having (A Lover)

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents the discussion of Gabriel Marcel's distinction between problem and mystery, and focuses its scope by applying the distinction to the relation between individuals. It aims to clarify the importance of courageous vulnerability through an account of a relationship in which this attitude is lacking. The topic of investigation in the chapter is Proustian love. According to the narrator of À la recherche, love is brought about by the imagination and is fueled by suffering. Central to the discussion is the narrator's relation to his main love, Albertine. Negative and, perhaps, neurotic though the narrator's love may seem, the chapter engages Marcel's ethics to show one of the ways in which À la recherche functions as the optical instrument the narrator describes in Le temps retrouvé. To start off the discussion of Proustian love, the chapter cites a passage from Stendhal's book Love.

Keywords: À la recherche; Albertine; courageous vulnerability; Gabriel Marcel; Proustian love; Stendhal



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