Comparative Literature | Topics in Inter-Arts Studies: Marcel Proust, Thomas Mann and the Other Arts
C655 | 6115 | Prof. David Hertz


TR 4:00-5:15 PM
Meets with C355

Marcel Proust (1871-1922) and Thomas Mann (1875-1955) are two of the
founding writers of literary modernism. They are both also known for
their wide-ranging knowledge of the other arts, which fed directly
into their influential fiction. They is particularly true in the
creation of the cultural/historical background so crucial in their
huge fictional works.  We will read several volumes of Marcel Proust’s
In Search of Lost Time and most of Mann’s Doctor Faustus. Other
readings from Mann will be added, as time allows. Some of the artists
who appear in the work of Proust or Mann, either directly or
indirectly, are Bartolomeo, Botticelli, Giotto, Dürer, Grünwald,
Fantin-Latour, Moreau, Corot, Manet, Turner and Whistler. Among the
musicians pertinent to the study of Proust and Mann are Palestrina,
Bach, Beethoven, Wagner, Debussy, Fauré, Franck, Pfitzner, Busoni,
Mahler, and Schoenberg. Some study of the historical background, such
as the Dreyfus trial and the rise of fascism is required. Short
readings from Ruskin, William James, Bergson, Adorno and Freud. Other
excerpted readings from anthropology, literary criticism, art history
and music history will enhance our study. Visits to the IU Art Museum
and IU School of Music performances required. Required readings will
be in translation, but reading knowledge of the French or German is
welcome, particularly among graduate students.