«One comes near the beginning of Le Temps retrouvé : Marcel and M de Charlus are discussing the destruction of France's great cathedrals in the German bombing raids, a matter of special pertinence to Proust's novel since he had once planned to name each of the volumes after a feature of cathedral architecture. When M de Charlus observes that if the "uplifted arm of St Firmin" on the cathedral of Amiens has been destroyed, "the highest affirmation of faith and energy has vanished from this world", Marcel responds: "The symbol of it, Monsieur... I adore certain symbols as much as you do. But it would be absurd to sacrifice to the symbol the reality which it symbolises. Cathedrals should be adored until such time as their preservation becomes dependent on our denying the truths that they teach."»
--"Reviving the dread deity: Paul Davis finds a multitude of voices in a new translation of Marcel Proust's masterpiece, In Search of Lost Time"