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Chasing Lost Time: The Life of C.K. Scott Moncrieff: Soldier, Spy, and Translator

Thursday, May 14, 2015 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm
Reception to follow

findlay_headshot.jpgJean Findlay

Chasing Lost Time: The Life of C.K. Scott Moncrieff: Soldier, Spy, and Translator
 

Since 1922, English-language readers have been able to leap into the prose of Proust thanks to translator C. K. Scott Moncrieff, who wrestled with Proust’s seven-volume masterpiece—published as Remembrance of Things Past—until his death in 1930. Always a popular author at the Boston Athenaeum, Proust is the focus of two reading groups with the lucky pleasure of having access to beaucoup historical editions of Proust's publications.

In her book, Chasing Lost Time: The Life of C.K. Scott Moncrieff: Soldier, Spy, and Translator, Jean Findlay reveals aspects of Scott Moncrieff’s life which have remained hidden behind the genius of the man whose reputation he helped build. Catholic and homosexual; a partygoer who was lonely deep down; secretly a spy in Mussolini’s Italy; publicly a debonair man of letters; a war hero described as “offensively brave,” whose letters from the front are remarkably cheerful—Scott Moncrieff was a man of his moment, thriving on paradoxes and extremes. In Chasing Lost Time, Findlay gives us a vibrant, moving portrait of the brilliant Scott Moncrieff, and of the era—changing fast and forever—in which he shone.

Jean Findlay was born in Edinburgh and studied law and French at Edinburgh University, then theater in Krakow with Tadeusz Kantor. She ran a theater company, writing and producing plays in Berlin, Bonn, Dublin, Rotterdam, and the Pompidou Centre in Paris. She has written for The Scotsman, The Independent, The Guardian, and Time Out, and she lives in Edinburgh with her husband and three children. She is the great-great-niece of C. K. Scott Moncrieff.

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