In Search of a Past

In Search of a Past

by Ronald Fraser
     
 

Ronald Fraser, the internationally renowned oral historian, turns his attention to his own origins in this remarkable memoir. In Search of a Past gathers the recollections of the servants who worked at the manor house outside London where Fraser grew up. It was the place where his parents—one American, the other Scottish—learned to embrace the

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Overview

Ronald Fraser, the internationally renowned oral historian, turns his attention to his own origins in this remarkable memoir. In Search of a Past gathers the recollections of the servants who worked at the manor house outside London where Fraser grew up. It was the place where his parents—one American, the other Scottish—learned to embrace the lifestyle of the idle local gentry. Fraser paints a vivid picture of a vanished interwar world. Sensitively recorded, the words of his family’s former employees capture the texture of English “county” life as seen from below, woven into a background of their personal lives, their work and the social antagonisms they experienced.

Beneath their stories, however, the author glimpses another unspoken narrative—that of his own childhood. He submits to a course of psychoanalysis and delves into a past riven by confusing emotions and conflicting class allegiances. The result is an innovative, honest, and beautifully written account of the search for lost time, one that defies literary categorization.

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Editorial Reviews

John Fowles
“A remarkably honest and revealing study—like a fiction, it recreates a past world; yet this one is unmistakably real.”
Raphael Samuel
“This book makes an important breach in the walls of memory and penetrates its frozen silences.”
Juliet Mitchell
“This is a beautifully written and most moving story … It’s a miniature masterpiece.”
From the Publisher
“This book makes an important breach in the walls of memory and penetrates its frozen silences.”—Raphael Samuel

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781844675975
Publisher:
Verso Books
Publication date:
08/31/2010
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
187
Product dimensions:
5.60(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

Ronald Fraser is the leading oral historian of twentieth-century Spain. He is the author of several books, including In Hiding, In Search of a Past, Blood of Spain and Napoleon’s Cursed War.

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