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by Vik Hovanisian

(the Proust Questionnaire)

Marcel Proust by Sarah Alinia Ziazi

For Episode 2
of the Proust Questionnaire, we welcome the Executive Director of the Toronto International Film Festival: Joana Vicente


smART Magazine Presents: Le Questionnaire
de Proust


In 1886, young M. Proust revealed his precocious and subtle spirit in a common parlour game, the “confessional” questionnaire, that was popular within Victorian society. While significant cultural and intellectual figures such as Oscar Wilde, Karl Marx and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle also left such confessions to posterity, it was Proust’s, in his refined form, that provided one of the most widely used personality questionnaires in history. Discovered and published in 1924 by psychoanalyst A. Berge, who found that Proust had “strived to reflect the most elusive nuances of thought,” the document became well-known as “Le Questionnaire de Proust.” 

by Joana Vicente
Joana Vincente 
by Sarah Alinia Ziazi


Your chief characteristic? 

Determination. Passion.


 A quality you appreciate in men?

Courage and a sense of humour.


 A quality you appreciate in women?

Courage and a sense of humour.


Your main flaw?



Your favourite pastime ?

A good meal with good conversation, watching films in a movie theater.


Your idea of happiness?

A walk on the beach with my family and my dog.


Country you'd desire to live?

I have lived in Macau, Portugal, Mozambique, France, the United States, five months in Vietnam and now Canada. I enjoy the newness and energy of living in Canada and getting to experience a city like you would as a resident instead of as a tourist. 


Your favourite colour ? flower?

Yellow makes me happy these days. Peonies, Hydrangeas


Your favourite prose authors?

Different authors have been important at different times. Marguerite Yourcenar, Jane Austen, Alice Munro…and most recently Elena Ferrante. I never realized that my favorite authors were all women but then I felt the need to add …Gabriel Garcia Marques


Your favourite poets?

Fernando Pessoa and all his heteronyms.


Your favourite names ?

Hannah Catarina, My daughter’s name.


What do you detest above all ?

Ignorance, injustice, hypocrisy, lies, cowardice… In one word…Trump.


A legislative reform you most admire?

Social justice reform that fights discrimination from pay inequality, religious freedom, access to health care and voting rights.


A natural talent you wish you had?

A good singing voice


Your motto?

Go forth unafraid. It might sound a bit cheesy – it’s my children’s high-school’s motto… But it fits. I grow and I am happiest when I am out of my comfort zone and…as hard as it might be, it is ultimately what propels me forward.

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