Fiction is a Passport to Anywhere

Art shows us many worlds

In honour of finally finishing all the volumes of Proust’s In Search of Lost Time, I decided to share this quote from Time Regained, which captures one of the main reasons why I love reading.

Thanks to reading, I have lived many lives. I have seen a brave new world as Prospero’s daughter and seen the brave new world that John Savage saw when he hung himself. I have witnessed one hundred years of solitude and the fall of the House of Usher.

Like Tiresias, I have been man and woman. I have been madness maddened searching for a white whale. I have been a genteel woman in the English countryside, hoping for a suitable match for a husband. I, like Tiresias, have witnessed the empty romance of the typist and the young man carbuncular and the enduring romances of Dante and Beatrice, Petrarch and Laura, and so many others.

I have gone through the looking glass, through the wardrobe, and through the wall to Diagon Alley. I’ve been abducted by Tralfmadorians and been instructed not to panic (and to bring a towel).  I’ve awoken to found myself transformed into a monstrous vermin and (more than once) awoken to find it was all a dream.

What lives will you live today?

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Hannah Arendt on Storytelling

I’d been reading some Hannah Arendt for an upcoming post I’ve been working on and found this quote I liked. One of the reasons I love fiction so much is it is able to tell us indirect truths, truths we get to figure out for ourselves. Sometimes when a lesson is explained through a story it is more emotionally involving and impactful than non-fiction material.

How has fiction affected you?

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