Swann's Way

by: Marcel Proust

Suggested Essay Topics

Why do Marcel's father and grandfather have harsh words with Adolphe and resolve never to speak to him again?

Discuss the role of voyeurism in the novel? Who spies on whom? Can Marcel be described as an observer or participant when spying on Mlle. Vinteuil?

How does Swann deal with his suspicions that Odette is cheating on him? Do they affect his attitude toward Odette, or does he ignore them? What are some of Odette's major faults that Swann conveniently forgets?

What aspects of belle époque life and culture play a major role in the novel? Is Proust considered with any political matters?

To what extent is Swann's Way autobiographical? What were his views on the relationship between the life of an author and his or her work?

Who does the writer Bergotte represent? What specific aspects of French philosophy and literature does he embody?

Why does Charlus send Swann the anonymous letter about Odette? Why does Swann try first to ignore it and then to believe that someone with a grudge against Odette wrote it?