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In 1890, long before he claimed his status as one of the greatest authors of all time Marcel Proust, still a teenager, took a questionnaire similar to this one, answering the questions with frank sincerity.
Banburyshire Info have resurrected the concept, and have started publishing answers from various local people with some questions from the Proust Questionnaire – designed to reveal the answerer’s tastes, aspirations, and sensibility.
Name: Judy Mansfield
Date the questions were answered: 24 February 2016
Village / Town / City you live in: Long Itchington, Warwickshire
Occupation: Civil Celebrant
The questions include Marcel Proust’s answers
Proust: To be separated from Mama
Judy Mansfield: Loneliness
Proust: In the country of the Ideal, or, rather, of my ideal
Judy Mansfield: Having moved so much in my life, I’m pretty much a ‘wherever I lay my hat’ person, making my home wherever I am – although I do have a secret hankering for Shropshire, where I grew up.
Proust: To live in contact with those I love, with the beauties of nature, with a quantity of books and music, and to have, within easy distance, a French theater
Judy Mansfield: A clear conscience, a sense of a job well done, good friends
Proust: To a life deprived of the works of genius
Judy Mansfield: I puzzled over what this meant! What does it mean?? I guess my answer is ‘not understanding the question’! Seriously, I am easily hurt, and never seem to get the knack of toughening up….
Proust: Those of romance and poetry, those who are the expression of an ideal rather than an imitation of the real
Judy Mansfield: Atticus Finch
Proust: A mixture of Socrates, Pericles, Mahomet, Pliny the Younger and Augustin Thierry
Judy Mansfield: Winston Churchill – a leader of his time, despite his faults. He is also an excellent writer; clear and precise.
Proust: A woman of genius leading an ordinary life
Judy Mansfield: Women who have made a difference: Jeanne d’Arc and Malala Yousafzai
Who are your favourite heroines of fiction?
Proust: Those who are more than women without ceasing to be womanly; everything that is tender, poetic, pure and in every way beautiful
Judy Mansfield: Minnie the Minx . Amelie
Judy Mansfield: I love art. Especially Turner and Monet. Impressionists do it for me. And in complete contrast, I like Margaret Loxton, Beryl Cook and Jilly Ballantyne
Judy Mansfield: Im so lucky to hear beautiful music in my job. I love Beethoven and I am learning to like Rutter, since I joined a choir. Any thing by the 3 tenors… I love André Rieu, and I adore a piece composed, surprisingly, by the actor Antony Hopkins called ‘And the Waltz Goes On’
Proust: Intelligence, moral sense
Judy Mansfield: Kindness, Compassion
Proust: Gentleness, naturalness, intelligence
Judy Mansfield: Kindness, Compassion – no difference between men and women in my answer
Proust: All virtues that are not limited to a sect: the universal virtues
Judy Mansfield: Integrity
Proust: Reading, dreaming, and writing verse
Judy Mansfield: Writing, walking, wine.
Proust: Since the question does not arise, I prefer not to answer it. All the same, I should very much have liked to be Pliny the Younger.
Judy Mansfield: Exactly who I am. Although if you had asked me that when I was younger, I would have answered very differently. We gain acceptance of ourselves as we get older, I think.
If I had to choose someone, it would be someone like Hitler – and I would have ensured he was kind and gentle, and made different choices.
Thank you Judy.
Judy is an award winning Civil Celebrant. You can find out what that means right here on Judy’s website www.cherish-ceremonies.co.uk/
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