Marcel Proust wrote Remembrance of Things Past (À la recherche du temps perdu) over many years. The first volume, Swann’s Way (Du côté de chez Swann), came out in 1913, and the last volume, Time Regained (Le Temps retrouvé), was published posthumously in 1927. A monumental exploration of memory, time, and human experience, the seven-volume novel consists of 1,267,069 words. That doubles those in Tolstoy’s War and Peace, making it one of the longest novels ever written.
Above, you can hear Alain de Botton (author of How Proust Can Change Your Life) read the opening lines of Swann’s Way, with the goal of … well… putting you to sleep. His YouTube channel writes: Proust’s novel “is very beautiful – and in a way a little boring too. This is for all those among us who suffer from insomnia – to send you into the best kind of sleep.” Make sure you add this 26-minute recording to your sleep/ASMR playlist. For de Botton’s introduction to the literary philosophy of Marcel Proust, watch this video here.
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