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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: Lesley Nell
Date questions answered: 9th March 2016
Age: 60 +
Village / Town / City you live in: Shotteswell
Occupation: Retired teacher, now a holistic therapist. Green Shoots Health
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Proust: To be separated from Mama
Lesley Nell: To be separated from my family – husband, son, daughter-in-law and gorgeous grandson
Proust: In the country of the Ideal, or, rather, of my ideal
Lesley Nell: Nearer to our son and his family, but spending some of the winter months in warmer climes.
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
Lesley Nell: Living near my family, in a pretty area, in regular contact with my friends, being able to enjoy social occasions together, take part in my favourite leisure activities, travelling to interesting places, enjoying the beauty of the UK and to be able to use my skills in volunteering roles.
Proust: To a life deprived of the works of genius
Lesley Nell: Day dreaming, reading
Proust: Those of romance and poetry, those who are the expression of an ideal rather than an imitation of the real
Lesley Nell: Those who can turn an ugly situation into a positive outcome.
Proust: A mixture of Socrates, Pericles, Mahomet, Pliny the Younger and Augustin Thierry
Lesley Nell: Emmeline Pankhurst, Jane Austen, Marie Curie to name a few notable women.
Proust: A woman of genius leading an ordinary life
Lesley Nell: Women who pioneer change or see a gap in the community and do something about it.
Proust: Those who are more than women without ceasing to be womanly; everything that is tender, poetic, pure and in every way beautiful
Lesley Nell: I agree with Proust
Lesley Nell: Turner
Lesley Nell: Evelyn Glennie
Proust: Intelligence, moral sense
Lesley Nell: Intelligence, compassion, good sense of humour and integrity
Proust: Gentleness, naturalness, intelligence
Lesley Nell: A sense of how they wish to use their talents to benefit humanity
Proust: All virtues that are not limited to a sect: the universal virtues
Lesley Nell: Patience
Proust: Reading, dreaming, and writing verse
Lesley Nell: Walking in the sunshine in a beautiful place, reading, being with my grandson
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.
Lesley Nell: Beatrix Potter
You can find more here – Local people answer the Proust Questionnaire
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