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Vladimir Nabokov

"Nabokov" redirects here. For his father, the politician, see Vladimir Dmitrievich Nabokov. For other persons with the name, see Nabokov (surname).

In this Eastern Slavic naming convention, the patronymic is Vladimirovich and the family name is Nabokov.

Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov (Russian:Владимир Владимирович Набоков (); 22 April [O.S. 10 April] 1899 – 2 July 1977), also known by the pen name Vladimir Sirin (Владимир Сирин), was a Russian-American novelist, poet, translator, and entomologist. Born in Russia, he wrote his first nine novels in Russian (1926–1938) while living in Berlin. He achieved international acclaim and prominence after moving to the United States and beginning to write in English. Nabokov became an American citizen in 1945, but he and his wife returned to Europe in 1961, settling in Montreux, Switzerland.

Vladimir Nabokov
Nabokov in Montreux, Switzerland, 1973
Native name

Contents

The author's grandfather Dmitry Nabokov, Justice Minister under Tsar Alexander II.
The author's father, V. D. Nabokov in his World War I officer's uniform, 1914
The Nabokov family's mansion in Saint Petersburg. Today it is the site of the Nabokov museum

Russia

Nabokov was born on 22 April 1899 (10 April 1899 Old Style) in Saint Petersburg to a wealthy and prominent family of the Russian nobility. His family traced its roots to the 14th-century Tatar prince Nabok Murza, who entered into the service of the Tsars, and from whom the family name is derived.: 16 His father was Vladimir Dmitrievich Nabokov (1870–1922), a liberal lawyer, statesman, and journalist, and his mother was the heiress Yelena Ivanovna née Rukavishnikova, the granddaughter of a millionaire gold-mine owner. His father was a leader of the pre-Revolutionary liberal Constitutional Democratic Party, and wrote numerous books and articles about criminal law and politics. His cousins included the composer Nicolas Nabokov. His paternal grandfather, Dmitry Nabokov (1827–1904), was Russia's Justice Minister during the reign of Alexander II. His paternal grandmother was the Baltic German Baroness Maria von Korff (1842–1926). Through his father's German ancestry, Nabokov was related to the composer Carl Heinrich Graun (1704–1759).

Vladimir was the family's eldest and favorite child, with four younger siblings: Sergey (1900–45), Olga (1903–78), Elena (1906–2000), and Kirill (1912–64). Sergey was killed in a Nazi concentration camp in 1945 after publicly denouncing Hitler's regime. Writer Ayn Rand recalled Olga (her close friend at Stoiunina Gymnasium) as a supporter of constitutional monarchy who first awakened Rand's interest in politics. Elena, who in later years became Vladimir's favorite sibling, published her correspondence with him in 1985. She was an important source for later biographers of Nabokov.

Nabokov spent his childhood and youth in Saint Petersburg and at the country estate Vyra near Siverskaya, south of the city. His childhood, which he called "perfect" and "cosmopolitan", was remarkable in several ways. The family spoke Russian, English, and French in their household, and Nabokov was trilingual from an early age. He related that the first English book his mother read to him was Misunderstood (1869) by Florence Montgomery. Much to his patriotic father's disappointment, Nabokov could read and write in English before he could in Russian. In his memoir Speak, Memory, Nabokov recalls numerous details of his privileged childhood. His ability to recall in vivid detail memories of his past was a boon to him during his permanent exile, providing a theme that runs from his first book Mary to later works such as Ada or Ardor: A Family Chronicle. While the family was nominally Orthodox, it had little religious fervor. Vladimir was not forced to attend church after he lost interest.

In 1916, Nabokov inherited the estate Rozhdestveno, next to Vyra, from his uncle Vasily Ivanovich Rukavishnikov ("Uncle Ruka" in Speak, Memory). He lost it in the October Revolution one year later; this was the only house he ever owned.[citation needed]

The Rozhdestveno estate 16-year-old Nabokov inherited from his maternal uncle. Nabokov possessed it for less than a year before losing it in the October Revolution.

Nabokov's adolescence was the period in which he made his first serious literary endeavors. In 1916, he published his first book, Stikhi ("Poems"), a collection of 68 Russian poems. At the time he was attending Tenishev school in Saint Petersburg, where his literature teacher Vladimir Vasilievich Gippius had criticized his literary accomplishments. Some time after the publication of Stikhi, Zinaida Gippius, renowned poet and first cousin of his teacher, told Nabokov's father at a social event, "Please tell your son that he will never be a writer."

Emigration

After the 1917 February Revolution, Nabokov's father became a secretary of the Russian Provisional Government in Saint Petersburg. After the October Revolution, the family was forced to flee the city for Crimea, at first not expecting to be away for very long. They lived at a friend's estate and in September 1918 moved to Livadiya, at the time part of the Ukrainian Republic. Nabokov's father became a minister of justice in the Crimean Regional Government.

After the withdrawal of the German Army in November 1918 and the defeat of the White Army (early 1919), the Nabokovs sought exile in western Europe, along with many other Russian refugees. They settled briefly in England, where Vladimir enrolled in Trinity College of the University of Cambridge, first studying zoology, then Slavic and Romance languages. His examination results on the first part of the Tripos, taken at the end of second year, were a starred first. He sat the second part of the exam in his fourth year, just after his father's death. Nabokov feared he might fail the exam, but his script was marked second-class. His final examination result was second-class, and his BA conferred in 1922. Nabokov later drew on his Cambridge experiences to write several works, including the novels Glory and The Real Life of Sebastian Knight.

In 1920, Nabokov's family moved to Berlin, where his father set up the émigré newspaper Rul' ("Rudder"). Nabokov followed them to Berlin two years later, after completing his studies at Cambridge.

Berlin years (1922–37)

In March 1922, Nabokov's father was fatally shot in Berlin by Russian monarchists Pyotr Shabelsky-Bork and Sergey Taboritsky as he was trying to shield the real target, Pavel Milyukov, a leader of the Constitutional Democratic Party-in-exile. Nabokov featured this mistaken, violent death repeatedly in his fiction, where characters would meet their deaths under accidental terms. (On one interpretation of his novel Pale Fire, for example, an assassin mistakenly kills the poet John Shade when his actual target is a fugitive European monarch.) Shortly after his father's death, Nabokov's mother and sister moved to Prague.

Nabokov stayed in Berlin, where he had become a recognised poet and writer in Russian within the émigré community; he published under the nom de plume V. Sirin (a reference to the fabulous bird of Russian folklore). To supplement his scant writing income, he taught languages and gave tennis and boxing lessons. Of his 15 Berlin years, Dieter E. Zimmer has written: "He never became fond of Berlin, and at the end intensely disliked it. He lived within the lively Russian community of Berlin that was more or less self-sufficient, staying on after it had disintegrated because he had nowhere else to go to. He knew little German. He knew few Germans except for landladies, shopkeepers, and immigration officials at the police headquarters."

In 1922, Nabokov became engaged to Svetlana Siewert; she broke off the engagement in early 1923, her parents worrying that he could not provide for her. In May 1923, he met Véra Evseyevna Slonim, a Russian-Jewish woman, at a charity ball in Berlin. They married in April 1925. Their only child, Dmitri, was born in 1934.

In the course of 1936, Véra lost her job because of the increasingly anti-Semitic environment; Sergey Taboritsky was appointed deputy head of Germany's Russian-émigré bureau; and Nabokov began seeking a job in the English-speaking world. In 1937, he left Germany for France, where he had a short affair with Irina Guadanini, also a Russian émigrée. His family followed him to France, making en route their last visit to Prague, then spent time in Cannes, Menton, Cap d'Antibes, and Fréjus, finally settling in Paris. This city also had a Russian émigré community.

In 1939, in Paris, Nabokov wrote the 55-page novella The Enchanter, his final work of Russian fiction. He later called it "the first little throb of Lolita."

In May 1940, the Nabokovs fled the advancing German troops, reaching the United States via the SS Champlain. Nabokov's brother Sergei did not leave France, and he died at the Neuengamme concentration camp on 9 January 1945.

United States

957 East State St., Ithaca, New York, where Nabokov lived with his family in 1947 and again in 1953 while teaching at Cornell University. Here he finished Lolita and started writing Pnin.

The Nabokovs settled in Manhattan and Vladimir began volunteer work as an entomologist at the American Museum of Natural History.

Nabokov joined the staff of Wellesley College in 1941 as resident lecturer in comparative literature. The position, created specifically for him, provided an income and free time to write creatively and pursue his lepidoptery. Nabokov is remembered as the founder of Wellesley's Russian Department. The Nabokovs resided in Wellesley, Massachusetts, during the 1941–42 academic year. In September 1942 they moved to nearby Cambridge, where they lived until June 1948. Following a lecture tour through the United States, Nabokov returned to Wellesley for the 1944–45 academic year as a lecturer in Russian. In 1945, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States. He served through the 1947–48 term as Wellesley's one-man Russian Department, offering courses in Russian language and literature. His classes were popular, due as much to his unique teaching style as to the wartime interest in all things Russian.[citation needed] At the same time he was the de facto curator of lepidoptery at Harvard University's Museum of Comparative Zoology. After being encouraged by Morris Bishop, Nabokov left Wellesley in 1948 to teach Russian and European literature at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, where he taught until 1959. Among his students at Cornell was future U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who later identified Nabokov as a major influence on her development as a writer.

Nabokov wrote Lolita while travelling on the butterfly-collection trips in the western United States that he undertook every summer. Véra acted as "secretary, typist, editor, proofreader, translator and bibliographer; his agent, business manager, legal counsel and chauffeur; his research assistant, teaching assistant and professorial understudy"; when Nabokov attempted to burn unfinished drafts of Lolita, Véra stopped him. He called her the best-humored woman he had ever known.

In June 1953 Nabokov and his family went to Ashland, Oregon. There he finished Lolita and began writing the novel Pnin. He roamed the nearby mountains looking for butterflies, and wrote a poem called Lines Written in Oregon. On 1 October 1953, he and his family returned to Ithaca, where he would later teach the young writer Thomas Pynchon.

Montreux and death

The grave of the Nabokovs at Cimetière de Clarens near Montreux, Switzerland

After the great financial success of Lolita, Nabokov returned to Europe and devoted himself to writing. In 1961 he and Véra moved to the Montreux Palace Hotel in Montreux, Switzerland; he stayed there until the end of his life. From his sixth-floor quarters he conducted his business and took tours to the Alps, Corsica, and Sicily to hunt butterflies. He died on 2 July 1977 in Montreux. His remains were cremated and buried at the Clarens cemetery in Montreux.: xxix–l

At the time of his death, he was working on a novel titled The Original of Laura. Véra and Dmitri, who were entrusted with Nabokov's literary executorship, ignored Nabokov's request to burn the incomplete manuscript and published it in 2009.

Nabokov in the 1960s
Nabokov in 1973

Nabokov is known as one of the leading prose stylists of the 20th century; his first writings were in Russian, but he achieved his greatest fame with the novels he wrote in the English language. As a trilingual (also writing in French, see Mademoiselle O) master, he has been compared to Joseph Conrad; Nabokov, however, disliked both the comparison and Conrad's work. He lamented to the critic Edmund Wilson, "I am too old to change Conradically" – which John Updike later called, "itself a jest of genius". This lament came in 1941, when Nabokov had been an apprentice American for less than one year.: 50 Later in a November 1950 Wilson letter, Nabokov offers a solid, non-comic appraisal: "Conrad knew how to handle readymade English better than I; but I know better the other kind. He never sinks to the depths of my solecisms, but neither does he scale my verbal peaks.": 282 Nabokov translated many of his own early works into English, sometimes in cooperation with his son Dmitri. His trilingual upbringing had a profound influence on his artistry.

Nabokov himself translated into Russian two books that he had originally written in English, Conclusive Evidence and Lolita. The "translation" of Conclusive Evidence was made because of Nabokov's feeling of imperfections in the English version. Writing the book, he noted that he needed to translate his own memories into English, and to spend a lot of time explaining things that are well known in Russia; then he decided to re-write the book once again, in his first native language, and after that he made the final version, Speak, Memory (Nabokov first wanted to name it "Speak, Mnemosyne"). Nabokov was a proponent of individualism, and rejected concepts and ideologies that curtailed individual freedom and expression, such as totalitarianism in its various forms, as well as Sigmund Freud's psychoanalysis.: 412ff Poshlost, or as he transcribed it, poshlust, is disdained and frequently mocked in his works.: 628ff On translating Lolita, Nabokov writes, "I imagined that in some distant future somebody might produce a Russian version of Lolita. I trained my inner telescope upon that particular point in the distant future and I saw that every paragraph, pock-marked as it is with pitfalls, could lend itself to hideous mistranslation. In the hands of a harmful drudge, the Russian version of Lolita would be entirely degraded and botched by vulgar paraphrases or blunders. So I decided to translate it myself."

Nabokov's creative processes involved writing sections of text on hundreds of index cards, which he expanded into paragraphs and chapters and rearranged to form the structure of his novels, a process that has been adopted by many screenplay writers in subsequent years.

Nabokov published under the pseudonym "Vladimir Sirin" in the 1920s to 1940s, occasionally to mask his identity from critics. He also makes cameo appearances in some of his novels, such as the character "Vivian Darkbloom" (an anagram of "Vladimir Nabokov"), who appears in both Lolita and Ada, or Ardor, and the character Blavdak Vinomori (another anagram of Nabokov's name) in King, Queen, Knave. Sirin is referenced as a different émigré author in his memoir and is also referenced in Pnin.

Nabokov is noted for his complex plots, clever word play, daring metaphors, and prose style capable of both parody and intense lyricism. He gained both fame and notoriety with his novel Lolita (1955), which tells of a grown man's devouring passion for a twelve-year-old girl. This and his other novels, particularly Pale Fire (1962), won him a place among the greatest novelists of the 20th century. His longest novel, which met with a mixed response, is Ada (1969). He devoted more time to the composition of this novel than any of his others. Nabokov's fiction is characterized by linguistic playfulness. For example, his short story "The Vane Sisters" is famous in part for its acrostic final paragraph, in which the first letters of each word spell out a message from beyond the grave. In another of his short stories, "Signs and Symbols" (1958), Nabokov creates a character suffering from an imaginary illness called "Referential Mania," in which the afflicted is faced with a world of environmental objects exchanging coded messages.

Nabokov's stature as a literary critic is founded largely on his four-volume translation and commentary for Alexander Pushkin's novel in verse, Eugene Onegin, published in 1964. That commentary ended with an appendix titled Notes on Prosody, which has developed a reputation of its own. It stemmed from his observation that while Pushkin's iambic tetrameters had been a part of Russian literature for a fairly short two centuries, they were clearly understood by the Russian prosodists. On the other hand, he viewed the much older English iambic tetrameters as muddled and poorly documented. In his own words:

I have been forced to invent a simple little terminology of my own, explain its application to English verse forms, and indulge in certain rather copious details of classification before even tackling the limited object of these notes to my translation of Pushkin's Eugene Onegin, an object that boils down to very little—in comparison to the forced preliminaries—namely, to a few things that the non-Russian student of Russian literature must know in regard to Russian prosody in general and to Eugene Onegin in particular.

Nabokov's lectures at Cornell University, as collected in Lectures on Literature, reveal his controversial ideas concerning art. He firmly believed that novels should not aim to teach and that readers should not merely empathize with characters but that a 'higher' aesthetic enjoyment should be attained, partly by paying great attention to details of style and structure. He detested what he saw as 'general ideas' in novels, and so when teaching Ulysses, for example, he would insist students keep an eye on where the characters were in Dublin (with the aid of a map) rather than teaching the complex Irish history that many critics see as being essential to an understanding of the novel. In 2010, Kitsch magazine, a student publication at Cornell, published a piece that focused on student reflections on his lectures and also explored Nabokov's long relationship with Playboy. Nabokov also wanted his students to describe the details of the novels rather than a narrative of the story and was very strict when it came to grading. As Edward Jay Epstein described his experience in Nabokov's classes, Nabokov made it clear from the very first lectures that he had little interest in fraternizing with students, who would be known not by their name but by their seat number.

Nabokov was a self-described synesthete, who at a young age equated the number five with the colour red. Aspects of synesthesia can be found in several of his works. His wife also exhibited synesthesia; like her husband, her mind's eye associated colours with particular letters. They discovered that Dmitri shared the trait, and moreover that the colours he associated with some letters were in some cases blends of his parents' hues—"which is as if genes were painting in aquarelle".

For some synesthetes, letters are not simply associated with certain colors, they are themselves colored. Nabokov frequently endowed his protagonists with a similar gift. In Bend Sinister Krug comments on his perception of the word "loyalty" as being like a golden fork lying out in the sun. In The Defense, Nabokov mentioned briefly how the main character's father, a writer, found he was unable to complete a novel that he planned to write, becoming lost in the fabricated storyline by "starting with colors". Many other subtle references are made in Nabokov's writing that can be traced back to his synesthesia. Many of his characters have a distinct "sensory appetite" reminiscent of synesthesia.

Nabokov's interest in entomology had been inspired by books of Maria Sibylla Merian he had found in the attic of his family's country home in Vyra. Throughout an extensive career of collecting he never learned to drive a car, and he depended on his wife Véra to take him to collecting sites. During the 1940s, as a research fellow in zoology, he was responsible for organizing the butterfly collection of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University. His writings in this area were highly technical. This, combined with his specialty in the relatively unspectacular tribe Polyommatini of the family Lycaenidae, has left this facet of his life little explored by most admirers of his literary works. He described the Karner blue. The genus Nabokovia was named after him in honor of this work, as were a number of butterfly and moth species (e.g., many species in the genera Madeleinea and Pseudolucia bear epithets alluding to Nabokov or names from his novels). In 1967, Nabokov commented: "The pleasures and rewards of literary inspiration are nothing beside the rapture of discovering a new organ under the microscope or an undescribed species on a mountainside in Iran or Peru. It is not improbable that had there been no revolution in Russia, I would have devoted myself entirely to lepidopterology and never written any novels at all."

The paleontologist and essayist Stephen Jay Gould discussed Nabokov's lepidoptery in his essay, "No Science Without Fancy, No Art Without Facts: The Lepidoptery of Vladimir Nabokov" (reprinted in I Have Landed). Gould notes that Nabokov was occasionally a scientific "stick-in-the-mud". For example, Nabokov never accepted that genetics or the counting of chromosomes could be a valid way to distinguish species of insects, and relied on the traditional (for lepidopterists) microscopic comparison of their genitalia.

The Harvard Museum of Natural History, which now contains the Museum of Comparative Zoology, still possesses Nabokov's "genitalia cabinet", where the author stored his collection of male blue butterfly genitalia. "Nabokov was a serious taxonomist," says museum staff writer Nancy Pick, author of The Rarest of the Rare: Stories Behind the Treasures at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. "He actually did quite a good job at distinguishing species that you would not think were different—by looking at their genitalia under a microscope six hours a day, seven days a week, until his eyesight was permanently impaired." The rest of his collection, about 4,300 specimens, was given to the Lausanne's Museum of Zoology in Switzerland.

Though his work was not taken seriously by professional lepidopterists during his life, new genetic research supports Nabokov's hypothesis that a group of butterfly species, called the Polyommatus blues, came to the New World over the Bering Strait in five waves, eventually reaching Chile.

Many of Nabokov's fans have tried to ascribe literary value to his scientific papers, Gould notes. Conversely, others have claimed that his scientific work enriched his literary output. Gould advocates a third view, holding that the other two positions are examples of the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy. Rather than assuming that either side of Nabokov's work caused or stimulated the other, Gould proposes that both stemmed from Nabokov's love of detail, contemplation, and symmetry.

Nabokov spent considerable time during his exile composing chess problems, which he published in Germany's Russian émigré press, Poems and Problems (18 problems) and Speak, Memory (one). He describes the process of composing and constructing in his memoir: "The strain on the mind is formidable; the element of time drops out of one's consciousness". To him, the "originality, invention, conciseness, harmony, complexity, and splendid insincerity" of creating a chess problem was similar to that in any other art.

Russian politics

Russia has always been a curiously unpleasant country despite her great literature. Unfortunately, Russians today have completely lost their ability to kill tyrants.

Vladimir Nabokov: 21

Nabokov was a classical liberal, in the tradition of his father, a liberal statesman who served in the Provisional Government following the February Revolution of 1917 as a member of the Constitutional Democratic Party. In Speak, Memory, Nabokov proudly recounted his father's campaigns against despotism and staunch opposition to capital punishment. Nabokov was a self-proclaimed "White Russian", and was, from its inception, a strong opponent of the Soviet government that came to power following the Bolshevik Revolution of October 1917. In a poem he wrote as a teenager in 1917, he described Lenin's Bolsheviks as "grey rag-tag people".

Throughout his life, Nabokov would remain committed to the classical liberal political philosophy of his father, and equally opposed Tsarist autocracy, communism, and fascism.: 24–36

Nabokov's father Vladimir Dmitrievich Nabokov was the most outspoken defender of Jewish rights in the Russian Empire, continuing in a family tradition that had been led by his own father, Dmitry Nabokov, who as Justice Minister under Tsar Alexander II had successfully blocked anti-semitic measures from being passed by the Interior Minister. That family strain would continue in Vladimir Nabokov, who fiercely denounced anti-semitism in his writings, and in the 1930s Nabokov was able to escape Hitler's Germany only with the help of Russian Jewish émigrés who still had grateful memories of his family's defense of Jews in Tsarist times.: 24

When asked, in 1969, whether he would like to revisit the land he had fled in 1918, now the Soviet Union, he replied: "There's nothing to look at. New tenement houses and old churches do not interest me. The hotels there are terrible. I detest the Soviet theater. Any palace in Italy is superior to the repainted abodes of the Tsars. The village huts in the forbidden hinterland are as dismally poor as ever, and the wretched peasant flogs his wretched cart horse with the same wretched zest. As to my special northern landscape and the haunts of my childhood – well, I would not wish to contaminate their images preserved in my mind.": 148

American politics

In the 1940s, as an émigré in America, Nabokov would stress the connection between American and English liberal democracy and the aspirations of the short-lived Russian provisional government. In 1942 he declared: "Democracy is humanity at its best ... it is the natural condition of every man ever since the human mind became conscious not only of the world but of itself." During the 1960s, in both letters and interviews, he reveals a profound contempt for the New Left movements, describing the protesters as "conformists" and "goofy hoodlums.": 139 In a 1967 interview, Nabokov stated that he refused to associate with supporters of Bolshevism or Tsarist autocracy but that he had "friends among intellectual constitutional monarchists as well as among intellectual social revolutionaries." Nabokov supported the Vietnam War effort and voiced admiration for both Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard Nixon. Racism against African-Americans appalled Nabokov, who touted Alexander Pushkin's multiracial background as an argument against segregation.

Religion

In his religious views, Nabokov was an agnostic. Nabokov was very open about, and received criticism over, his utter indifference to organized mysticism, to religion, and to the church—any church.

Sleep

Nabokov was a notorious, lifelong insomniac who admitted unease at the prospect of sleep, famously stating that "the night is always a giant". His insomnia contributed to an enlarged prostate later in life, which only exacerbated his sleeplessness. Nabokov called sleep a "moronic fraternity", "mental torture", and a "nightly betrayal of reason, humanity, genius". Insomnia's impact on his work was widely explored and in 2017 Princeton University Press published a compilation of his dream diary entries, Insomniac Dreams: Experiments with Time by Vladimir Nabokov.

Views on women writers

Nabokov's wife Véra was his strongest supporter and assisted him throughout his lifetime, but Nabokov admitted to having a "prejudice" against women writers. He wrote to Edmund Wilson, who had been making suggestions for his lectures: "I dislike Jane Austen, and am prejudiced, in fact against all women writers. They are in another class." But after rereading Austen's Mansfield Park he changed his mind and taught it in his literature course; he also praised Mary McCarthy's work and described Marina Tsvetaeva as a "poet of genius" in Speak, Memory.: 274 Although Véra worked as his personal translator and secretary, he made publicly known that his ideal translator would be male, and especially not a "Russian-born female". In the first chapter of Glory he attributes the protagonist's similar prejudice to the impressions made by children's writers like Lidiya Charski, and in the short story "The Admiralty Spire" deplores the posturing, snobbery, antisemitism, and cutesiness he considered characteristic of Russian women authors.[disputeddiscuss]

Monument of Nabokov in Montreux

The Russian literary critic Yuly Aykhenvald was an early admirer of Nabokov, citing in particular his ability to imbue objects with life: "he saturates trivial things with life, sense and psychology and gives a mind to objects; his refined senses notice colorations and nuances, smells and sounds, and everything acquires an unexpected meaning and truth under his gaze and through his words." The critic James Wood argued that Nabokov's use of descriptive detail proved an "overpowering, and not always very fruitful, influence on two or three generations after him", including authors such as Martin Amis and John Updike. While a student at Cornell in the 1950s, Thomas Pynchon attended several of Nabokov's lectures and alluded to Lolita in chapter six of his novel The Crying of Lot 49 (1966) in which Serge, counter-tenor in the band the Paranoids, sings:

What chance has a lonely surfer boy
For the love of a surfer chick,
With all these Humbert Humbert cats
Coming on so big and sick?
For me, my baby was a woman,
For him she's just another nymphet.

It has also been argued that Pynchon's prose style is influenced by Nabokov's preference for actualism over realism. Of the authors who came to prominence during Nabokov's lifetime, John Banville, Don DeLillo, Salman Rushdie, and Edmund White were all influenced by him. The novelist John Hawkes took inspiration from Nabokov and considered himself his follower. Nabokov's story "Signs and Symbols" was on the reading list for Hawkes's writing students at Brown University. "A writer who truly and greatly sustains us is Vladimir Nabokov," Hawkes stated in a 1964 interview.

Several authors who came to prominence in the 1990s and 2000s have also cited Nabokov's work as a literary influence. Aleksandar Hemon, whose high-wire wordplay and sense of the absurd are often compared to Nabokov's, has acknowledged the latter's impact on his writing.[citation needed] Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Michael Chabon listed Lolita and Pale Fire among the "books that, I thought, changed my life when I read them," and stated that "Nabokov's English combines aching lyricism with dispassionate precision in a way that seems to render every human emotion in all its intensity but never with an ounce of schmaltz or soggy language". Pulitzer Prize winner Jeffrey Eugenides said that "Nabokov has always been and remains one of my favorite writers. He's able to juggle ten balls where most people can juggle three or four."[dubiousdiscuss] T. Coraghessan Boyle said that "Nabokov's playfulness and the ravishing beauty of his prose are ongoing influences" on his writing, and Marisha Pessl has also been influenced by Nabokov.

Nabokov appears in W. G. Sebald's 1993 novel The Emigrants.

The song cycle "Sing, Poetry" on the 2011 contemporary classical album Troika comprises settings of Russian and English versions of three of Nabokov's poems by such composers as Jay Greenberg, Michael Schelle and Lev Zhurbin.

  1. Confusion over his birth date was generated by some people misunderstanding the relationship between the Julian and Gregorian calendars. At the time of Nabokov's birth, the offset between the calendars was 12 days. His date of birth in the Julian calendar was 10 April 1899; in the Gregorian, 22 April 1899. The fact that the offset increased from 12 to 13 days for dates occurring after February 1900 was always irrelevant to earlier dates, and hence a 13-day offset should never have been applied to Nabokov's date of birth. Nevertheless, it was so misapplied by some writers, and 23 April came to be erroneously shown in many places as his birthday. In his memoirs Speak, Memory Nabokov indicates that 22 April was the correct date but that he nevertheless preferred to celebrate his birthday "with diminishing pomp" on 23 April (p. 6).[vague] As he happily pointed out on several occasions during interviews, this meant he also shared a birthday with William Shakespeare and Shirley Temple.
  2. British English: ,American English: .
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  9. Boyd, Brian (1990). Vladimir Nabokov: The Russian Years. Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-7011-3700-7.
  10. Wyllie, Barbara (2010).Vladimir Nabokov. Reaktion Books. p. 7. ISBN 9781861896605.
  11. "Vladimir Nabokov | American author". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved3 May 2016.
  12. Giroud, Vincent (2015). Nicolas Nabokov: A Life in Freedom and Music. Oxford University Press. p. 2.
  13. Sciabarra, Chris Matthew (2013), Ayn Rand: The Russian Radical, Penn State Press, pp. 66, 367–68.
  14. Gladstein, Mimi Reisel (2009), Ayn Rand, Major Conservative and Libertarian Thinkers, New York: Continuum, p. 2, ISBN 978-0-8264-4513-1.
  15. Karlinsky, Simon (25 June 2008). "Cycnos". NABOKOV : At the Crossroads of Modernism and Postmodernism -. Retrieved5 December 2015.Cite journal requires |journal= ()
  16. Amis, Martin (1994) [1993], Visiting Mrs Nabokov: And Other Excursions (reprint ed.), Penguin Books, pp. 115–18, ISBN 978-0-14-023858-7.
  17. Zimmer, Dieter E (15 July 2002). "Presentation of the book Nabokov's Berlin". The International Vladimir Nabokov Symposium. St. Petersburg..
  18. Schiff, Stacy. "Vera, chapter 1, para 6". The New York Times.
  19. Heinegg, Peter (18 September 1986). "The Enchanter by Vladimir Nabokov; translated by Dmitri Navokov". Los Angeles Times.
  20. Cahill, Sarah (9 July 1987). "Reading: The First Throb of Lolita". Chicago Reader. Retrieved3 September 2021.
  21. Grossman, Lev (18 May 2000), "The gay Nabokov", Salon, retrieved8 December 2013.
  22. "Nabokov's Type: Lysandra cormion". Retrieved18 April 2013.
  23. "Nabokov, Scientist". Natural History. July 1999.
  24. "Supreme Court Interviews". LawProse.org. Retrieved5 December 2015.
  25. "Vera Nabokov, 89, Wife, Muse and Agent". The New York Times. 11 April 1991.
  26. Boyd, Brian. Vladimir Nabokov: The American Years. pp. 170, 601.
  27. Dodge, Dani (5 November 2006). "Snapshot: Nabokov's Retreat". Mail Tribune (Medford, Oregon). Ashland, Oregon. p. 2. Archived from the original on 2 December 2010. Retrieved9 August 2018.
  28. Nabokov, Vladimir (Summer–Fall 1967). "Vladimir Nabokov, The Art of Fiction No. 40". The Paris Review (Interview) (41). Interviewed by Herbert Gold. Retrieved5 June 2018.
  29. McCrum, Robert (25 October 2009). "The Final Twist in Nabokov's Untold Story". The Observer – via theguardian.com.
  30. Alexandrov, Vladimir E., ed. (1995). The Garland Companion to Vladimir Nabokov. New York: Garland Publishing. ISBN 978-0-8153-0354-1.
  31. Connolly, Kate (22 April 2008). "Nabokov's last work will not be burned". The Guardian. UK. Archived from the original on 24 July 2008. Retrieved24 June 2008.
  32. "Interview with Dmitri Nabokov". NPR.org. 30 April 2008.
  33. https://www.webcitation.org/5lK6d8XEx?url=http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5iBxjF8uCw6NIn9hlD_8tEsKhlALA
  34. Nabokov, Vladimir (2001). Karlinsky, Simon (ed.). Dear Bunny, Dear Volodya: The Nabokov-Wilson Letters, 1940–1971 (Revised ed.). Berkeley: University of California Press.: 268
  35. Updike, John. Hugging the Shore. p. 221.
  36. Toffler, Alvin. "Playboy interview: Vladimir Nabokov". Playboy. Playboy. Retrieved5 December 2013.
  37. Whiteman, Alden (5 July 1977). "Vladimir Nabokov, Author of 'Lolita' and 'Ada,' Is Dead". The New York Times. Retrieved10 February 2009.
  38. Wershler, Darren (2010). "The Locative, the Ambient, and the Hallucinatory in the Internet of Things". Design and Culture. 2 (2): 199–216. doi:10.2752/175470710X12696138525703. S2CID 144607114.
  39. Strehle, Susan (1971). Actualism: Pynchon's Debt to Nabokov. University of Wisconsin Press. pp. 37–38.
  40. Collected by Fredson Bowers in 1980 and published by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich
  41. "Kitsch Magazine". Retrieved5 December 2015.
  42. Epstein, Edward Jay (4 April 2013). "An A from Nabokov". The New York Review of Books. Retrieved5 June 2018.
  43. Martin, Patrick. "Synaesthesia, metaphor and right-brain functioning" in Egoist.
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  45. Foster, John Burt (1993).Nabokov's Art of Memory and European Modernism. Princeton University Press. pp. 26–32. ISBN 9780691069715.
  46. Todd, Kim (2007). Chrysalis: Maria Sibylla Merian and the Secrets of Metamorphosis. Harcourt. p. 11. ISBN 978-0-15-101108-7.
  47. "Butterflies and moths bearing Nabokov's name". libraries.psu.edu. Zembla. 1996. Retrieved12 February 2009.
  48. Pick, Nancy; Sloan, Mark (2004).The Rarest of the Rare: Stories Behind the Treasures at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. Harper. ISBN 978-0-06-053718-0. Retrieved10 March 2010.
  49. Pick, Nancy (Spring 2005). "Blood, Sweat, and Bones"(PDF). Colloquy (Alumni Quarterly): 8. Archived from the original(PDF) on 8 September 2015. Retrieved19 November 2014.
  50. Zimmer, Carl (25 January 2011). "Nabokov Theory on Butterfly Evolution Is Vindicated". The New York Times. Retrieved25 January 2011.
  51. Dragunoiu, Dana (2011). Vladimir Nabokov and the Poetics of Liberalism. Northwestern University Press. p. 17.
  52. Nabokov, Vladimir (1990). Strong opinions. Vintage Books.
  53. Dragunoiu, Dana (2011). Vladimir Nabokov and the Poetics of Liberalism. Northwestern University Press. p. 29.
  54. Wyllie, Barbara (2010).Vladimir Nabokov. London. p. 22. ISBN 9781861896605.
  55. Boyd, Brian (2016). Vladimir Nabokov: The American Years. Princeton University Press. p. 41.
  56. Larmour, David Henry James (2002).Discourse and ideology in Nabokov's prose. Routledge. p. 17. ISBN 9780415286589.
  57. Pifer, Ellen (2003). Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita: A Casebook. Oxford University Press. pp. 195–199.
  58. Pitzer, Andrea (2013). The Secret History of Vladimir Nabokov. Open Road Media.[page needed]
  59. Schiff, Stacy (2000). Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov). Random House Digital.[page needed]
  60. Epstein, Jacob (2002).Book business: publishing past, present, and future. W. W. Norton. pp. 76–77. ISBN 9780393322347.
  61. Morton, Donald E. (1974). Vladimir Nabokov. F. Ungar Publishing Company. p. 8. ISBN 9780804426381. Nabokov is a self-affirmed agnostic in matters religious, political, and philosophical.
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  63. Parkin, Simon (14 September 2018). "Finally, a cure for insomnia?". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved3 July 2020.
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  65. "For three months in 1964, Vladimir Nabokov wrote down his dreams every morning, pursuing a theory that time flows backward". The Vintage News. 19 December 2017. Retrieved23 November 2019.
  66. Nabokov, Vladimir (2017). Barabtarlo, Gennady (ed.). Insomniac Dreams. Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-691-16794-7.
  67. Frank, Siggy (2012). Nabokov's Theatrical Imagination. Cambridge University Press. p. 170.
  68. Pifer, Ellen (1999). Connolly, Julian W. (ed.). "Her monster, his nymphet: Nabokov and Mary Shelley". Nabokov and His Fiction: New Perspectives: 158–176. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511597718.010. ISBN 9780521632836.
  69. Rutledge, David S. (2011). "fn. 7".Nabokov's Permanent Mystery: The Expression of Metaphysics in His Work. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company. p. 187. ISBN 9780786460762.
  70. From Chapter 1: "Martin's first books were in English: his mother loathed the Russian magazine for children Zadushevnoe Slovo (The Heartfelt Word), and inspired in him such aversion for Madame Charski's young heroines with dusky complexions and titles that even later Martin was wary of any book written by a woman, sensing even in the best of such books an unconscious urge on the part of a middle-aged and perhaps chubby lady to dress up in a pretty name and curl up on the sofa like a pussy cat."
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  75. "John Banville", The Guardian. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
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  78. "An Interview with Edmund White". Bookslut.com. February 2007. Retrieved12 April 2008.
  79. "John Hawkes: An Interview. 20 March 1964. John J. Enck and John Hawkes," Wisconsin Studies in Contemporary Literature 6.2 (summer 1965): 144. See also Maxim D. Shrayer, "Writing in Tongues," Brown Alumni Monthly September/October 2017; Bez Nabokova," Snob.ru 2 July 2017.
  80. Chabon, Michael (July 2006). "It Changed My Life". michaelchabon.com. Archived from the original on 20 July 2006. Retrieved12 February 2009.
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  82. "Q & A with Jeffrey Eugenides". fifthestate.co.uk. 12 April 2008. Archived from the original on 2 February 2008.
  83. "A Conversation with T. C. Boyle". penguingroup.com. Penguin Reading Guides. Archived from the original on 11 December 2004.
  84. "An interview with Marisha Pessl". Bookslut.com. September 2006. Retrieved15 June 2007.
  85. Cohen, Lisa (February–March 1997). "Review: The Emigrants by W. G. Sebald". Boston Review.
  86. Brian Boyd p. 37
  87. Whitman, Alden (23 April 1969). "Interview with Vladimir Nabokov". The New York Times. p. 20.

Biography

Criticism

Bibliography

Media adaptations

Entomology

  • Johnson, Kurt, and Steve Coates. Nabokov's blues: The scientific odyssey of a literary genius. New York: McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0-07-137330-6 (very accessibly written)
  • Sartori, Michel, ed. Les Papillons de Nabokov [The butterflies of Nabokov]. Lausanne: Musée cantonal de Zoologie, 1993. ISBN 2-9700051-0-7 (exhibition catalogue, primarily in English)
  • Zimmer, Dieter E. A Guide to Nabokov's Butterflies and Moths. Privately published, 2001. ISBN 3-00-007609-3 (web page)

Other

  • Deroy, Chloé, Vladimir Nabokov, Icare russe et Phénix américain (2010). Dijon: EUD
  • Gezari, Janet K.; Wimsatt, W. K., "Vladimir Nabokov: More Chess Problems and the Novel", Yale French Studies, No. 58, In Memory of Jacques Ehrmann: Inside Play Outside Game (1979), pp. 102–115, Yale University Press.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Vladimir Nabokov
Wikimedia Commons has media related toVladimir Nabokov.

Vladimir Nabokov
Vladimir Nabokov Language Watch Edit Nabokov redirects here For his father the politician see Vladimir Dmitrievich Nabokov For other persons with the name see Nabokov surname In this Eastern Slavic naming convention the patronymic is Vladimirovich and the family name is Nabokov Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov b Russian Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov vlɐˈdʲimʲɪr vlɐˈdʲimʲɪrevʲɪtɕ nɐˈbokef listen 22 April O S 10 April 1899 a 2 July 1977 also known by the pen name Vladimir Sirin Vladimir Sirin was a Russian American novelist poet translator and entomologist Born in Russia he wrote his first nine novels in Russian 1926 1938 while living in Berlin He achieved international acclaim and prominence after moving to the United States and beginning to write in English Nabokov became an American citizen in 1945 but he and his wife returned to Europe in 1961 settling in Montreux Switzerland Vladimir NabokovNabokov in Montreux Switzerland 1973Native nameVladimir NabokovBorn22 April O S 10 April 1899 a Saint Petersburg Russian EmpireDied2 July 1977 1977 07 02 aged 78 Montreux SwitzerlandPen nameVladimir SirinOccupationNovelist professorCitizenshipRussian EmpireUnited StatesSwitzerlandAlma materUniversity of CambridgeLiterary movementModernism postmodernismNotable worksThe Defense 1930 Despair 1934 Invitation to a Beheading 1936 The Gift 1938 The Enchanter 1939 Signs and Symbols 1948 Lolita 1955 Pnin 1957 Pale Fire 1962 Speak Memory 1936 1966 Ada or Ardor 1969 SpouseVera NabokovChildrenDmitri NabokovSignatureWebsitevladimir nabokov wbr org Literature portal Nabokov s Lolita 1955 was ranked fourth in the list of the Modern Library 100 Best Novels in 2007 6 Pale Fire 1962 was ranked 53rd on the same list and his memoir Speak Memory 1951 was listed eighth on publisher Random House s list of the 20th century s greatest nonfiction 7 He was a seven time finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction Nabokov was also an expert lepidopterist and composer of chess problems Contents 1 Life and career 1 1 Russia 1 2 Emigration 1 3 Berlin years 1922 37 1 4 United States 1 5 Montreux and death 2 Work 3 Synesthesia 4 Entomology 5 Chess problems 6 Politics and views 6 1 Russian politics 6 2 American politics 6 3 Religion 6 4 Sleep 6 5 Views on women writers 7 Influence 8 Adaptations 9 List of works 10 Notes 11 References 12 Further reading 12 1 Biography 12 2 Criticism 12 3 Bibliography 12 4 Media adaptations 12 5 Entomology 12 6 Other 13 External linksLife and career Edit The author s grandfather Dmitry Nabokov Justice Minister under Tsar Alexander II The author s father V D Nabokov in his World War I officer s uniform 1914 The Nabokov family s mansion in Saint Petersburg Today it is the site of the Nabokov museum Russia Edit Nabokov was born on 22 April 1899 10 April 1899 Old Style in Saint Petersburg a to a wealthy and prominent family of the Russian nobility His family traced its roots to the 14th century Tatar prince Nabok Murza who entered into the service of the Tsars and from whom the family name is derived 8 9 16 10 His father was Vladimir Dmitrievich Nabokov 1870 1922 a liberal lawyer statesman and journalist and his mother was the heiress Yelena Ivanovna nee Rukavishnikova the granddaughter of a millionaire gold mine owner His father was a leader of the pre Revolutionary liberal Constitutional Democratic Party and wrote numerous books and articles about criminal law and politics 11 His cousins included the composer Nicolas Nabokov His paternal grandfather Dmitry Nabokov 1827 1904 was Russia s Justice Minister during the reign of Alexander II His paternal grandmother was the Baltic German Baroness Maria von Korff 1842 1926 Through his father s German ancestry Nabokov was related to the composer Carl Heinrich Graun 1704 1759 12 Vladimir was the family s eldest and favorite child with four younger siblings Sergey 1900 45 Olga 1903 78 Elena 1906 2000 and Kirill 1912 64 Sergey was killed in a Nazi concentration camp in 1945 after publicly denouncing Hitler s regime Writer Ayn Rand recalled Olga her close friend at Stoiunina Gymnasium as a supporter of constitutional monarchy who first awakened Rand s interest in politics 13 14 Elena who in later years became Vladimir s favorite sibling published her correspondence with him in 1985 She was an important source for later biographers of Nabokov Nabokov spent his childhood and youth in Saint Petersburg and at the country estate Vyra near Siverskaya south of the city His childhood which he called perfect and cosmopolitan was remarkable in several ways The family spoke Russian English and French in their household and Nabokov was trilingual from an early age He related that the first English book his mother read to him was Misunderstood 1869 by Florence Montgomery Much to his patriotic father s disappointment Nabokov could read and write in English before he could in Russian In his memoir Speak Memory Nabokov recalls numerous details of his privileged childhood His ability to recall in vivid detail memories of his past was a boon to him during his permanent exile providing a theme that runs from his first book Mary to later works such as Ada or Ardor A Family Chronicle While the family was nominally Orthodox it had little religious fervor Vladimir was not forced to attend church after he lost interest In 1916 Nabokov inherited the estate Rozhdestveno next to Vyra from his uncle Vasily Ivanovich Rukavishnikov Uncle Ruka in Speak Memory He lost it in the October Revolution one year later this was the only house he ever owned citation needed The Rozhdestveno estate 16 year old Nabokov inherited from his maternal uncle Nabokov possessed it for less than a year before losing it in the October Revolution Nabokov s adolescence was the period in which he made his first serious literary endeavors In 1916 he published his first book Stikhi Poems a collection of 68 Russian poems At the time he was attending Tenishev school in Saint Petersburg where his literature teacher Vladimir Vasilievich Gippius had criticized his literary accomplishments Some time after the publication of Stikhi Zinaida Gippius renowned poet and first cousin of his teacher told Nabokov s father at a social event Please tell your son that he will never be a writer 15 Emigration Edit After the 1917 February Revolution Nabokov s father became a secretary of the Russian Provisional Government in Saint Petersburg After the October Revolution the family was forced to flee the city for Crimea at first not expecting to be away for very long They lived at a friend s estate and in September 1918 moved to Livadiya at the time part of the Ukrainian Republic Nabokov s father became a minister of justice in the Crimean Regional Government After the withdrawal of the German Army in November 1918 and the defeat of the White Army early 1919 the Nabokovs sought exile in western Europe along with many other Russian refugees They settled briefly in England where Vladimir enrolled in Trinity College of the University of Cambridge first studying zoology then Slavic and Romance languages His examination results on the first part of the Tripos taken at the end of second year were a starred first He sat the second part of the exam in his fourth year just after his father s death Nabokov feared he might fail the exam but his script was marked second class His final examination result was second class and his BA conferred in 1922 Nabokov later drew on his Cambridge experiences to write several works including the novels Glory and The Real Life of Sebastian Knight In 1920 Nabokov s family moved to Berlin where his father set up the emigre newspaper Rul Rudder Nabokov followed them to Berlin two years later after completing his studies at Cambridge Berlin years 1922 37 Edit In March 1922 Nabokov s father was fatally shot in Berlin by Russian monarchists Pyotr Shabelsky Bork and Sergey Taboritsky as he was trying to shield the real target Pavel Milyukov a leader of the Constitutional Democratic Party in exile Nabokov featured this mistaken violent death repeatedly in his fiction where characters would meet their deaths under accidental terms On one interpretation of his novel Pale Fire for example an assassin mistakenly kills the poet John Shade when his actual target is a fugitive European monarch Shortly after his father s death Nabokov s mother and sister moved to Prague Nabokov stayed in Berlin where he had become a recognised poet and writer in Russian within the emigre community he published under the nom de plume V Sirin a reference to the fabulous bird of Russian folklore To supplement his scant writing income he taught languages and gave tennis and boxing lessons 16 Of his 15 Berlin years Dieter E Zimmer has written He never became fond of Berlin and at the end intensely disliked it He lived within the lively Russian community of Berlin that was more or less self sufficient staying on after it had disintegrated because he had nowhere else to go to He knew little German He knew few Germans except for landladies shopkeepers and immigration officials at the police headquarters 17 In 1922 Nabokov became engaged to Svetlana Siewert she broke off the engagement in early 1923 her parents worrying that he could not provide for her 18 In May 1923 he met Vera Evseyevna Slonim a Russian Jewish woman at a charity ball in Berlin 16 They married in April 1925 16 Their only child Dmitri was born in 1934 In the course of 1936 Vera lost her job because of the increasingly anti Semitic environment Sergey Taboritsky was appointed deputy head of Germany s Russian emigre bureau and Nabokov began seeking a job in the English speaking world In 1937 he left Germany for France where he had a short affair with Irina Guadanini also a Russian emigree His family followed him to France making en route their last visit to Prague then spent time in Cannes Menton Cap d Antibes and Frejus finally settling in Paris This city also had a Russian emigre community In 1939 in Paris Nabokov wrote the 55 page novella The Enchanter his final work of Russian fiction 19 He later called it the first little throb of Lolita 20 In May 1940 the Nabokovs fled the advancing German troops reaching the United States via the SS Champlain Nabokov s brother Sergei did not leave France and he died at the Neuengamme concentration camp on 9 January 1945 21 United States Edit 957 East State St Ithaca New York where Nabokov lived with his family in 1947 and again in 1953 while teaching at Cornell University Here he finished Lolita and started writing Pnin The Nabokovs settled in Manhattan and Vladimir began volunteer work as an entomologist at the American Museum of Natural History 22 Nabokov joined the staff of Wellesley College in 1941 as resident lecturer in comparative literature The position created specifically for him provided an income and free time to write creatively and pursue his lepidoptery Nabokov is remembered as the founder of Wellesley s Russian Department The Nabokovs resided in Wellesley Massachusetts during the 1941 42 academic year In September 1942 they moved to nearby Cambridge where they lived until June 1948 Following a lecture tour through the United States Nabokov returned to Wellesley for the 1944 45 academic year as a lecturer in Russian In 1945 he became a naturalized citizen of the United States He served through the 1947 48 term as Wellesley s one man Russian Department offering courses in Russian language and literature His classes were popular due as much to his unique teaching style as to the wartime interest in all things Russian citation needed At the same time he was the de facto curator of lepidoptery at Harvard University s Museum of Comparative Zoology 23 After being encouraged by Morris Bishop Nabokov left Wellesley in 1948 to teach Russian and European literature at Cornell University in Ithaca New York where he taught until 1959 Among his students at Cornell was future U S Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who later identified Nabokov as a major influence on her development as a writer 24 Nabokov wrote Lolita while travelling on the butterfly collection trips in the western United States that he undertook every summer Vera acted as secretary typist editor proofreader translator and bibliographer his agent business manager legal counsel and chauffeur his research assistant teaching assistant and professorial understudy when Nabokov attempted to burn unfinished drafts of Lolita Vera stopped him He called her the best humored woman he had ever known 16 25 26 In June 1953 Nabokov and his family went to Ashland Oregon There he finished Lolita and began writing the novel Pnin He roamed the nearby mountains looking for butterflies and wrote a poem called Lines Written in Oregon On 1 October 1953 he and his family returned to Ithaca where he would later teach the young writer Thomas Pynchon 27 Montreux and death Edit The grave of the Nabokovs at Cimetiere de Clarens near Montreux Switzerland After the great financial success of Lolita Nabokov returned to Europe and devoted himself to writing In 1961 he and Vera moved to the Montreux Palace Hotel in Montreux Switzerland he stayed there until the end of his life 28 From his sixth floor quarters he conducted his business and took tours to the Alps Corsica and Sicily to hunt butterflies He died on 2 July 1977 in Montreux 29 His remains were cremated and buried at the Clarens cemetery in Montreux 30 xxix l At the time of his death he was working on a novel titled The Original of Laura Vera and Dmitri who were entrusted with Nabokov s literary executorship 16 ignored Nabokov s request to burn the incomplete manuscript and published it in 2009 31 32 33 Work Edit Nabokov in the 1960s Nabokov in 1973 Nabokov is known as one of the leading prose stylists of the 20th century his first writings were in Russian but he achieved his greatest fame with the novels he wrote in the English language As a trilingual also writing in French see Mademoiselle O master he has been compared to Joseph Conrad Nabokov however disliked both the comparison and Conrad s work He lamented to the critic Edmund Wilson I am too old to change Conradically which John Updike later called itself a jest of genius This lament came in 1941 when Nabokov had been an apprentice American for less than one year 34 50 35 Later in a November 1950 Wilson letter Nabokov offers a solid non comic appraisal Conrad knew how to handle readymade English better than I but I know better the other kind He never sinks to the depths of my solecisms but neither does he scale my verbal peaks 34 282 Nabokov translated many of his own early works into English sometimes in cooperation with his son Dmitri His trilingual upbringing had a profound influence on his artistry Nabokov himself translated into Russian two books that he had originally written in English Conclusive Evidence and Lolita The translation of Conclusive Evidence was made because of Nabokov s feeling of imperfections in the English version Writing the book he noted that he needed to translate his own memories into English and to spend a lot of time explaining things that are well known in Russia then he decided to re write the book once again in his first native language and after that he made the final version Speak Memory Nabokov first wanted to name it Speak Mnemosyne Nabokov was a proponent of individualism and rejected concepts and ideologies that curtailed individual freedom and expression such as totalitarianism in its various forms as well as Sigmund Freud s psychoanalysis 30 412ff Poshlost or as he transcribed it poshlust is disdained and frequently mocked in his works 30 628ff On translating Lolita Nabokov writes I imagined that in some distant future somebody might produce a Russian version of Lolita I trained my inner telescope upon that particular point in the distant future and I saw that every paragraph pock marked as it is with pitfalls could lend itself to hideous mistranslation In the hands of a harmful drudge the Russian version of Lolita would be entirely degraded and botched by vulgar paraphrases or blunders So I decided to translate it myself 36 Nabokov s creative processes involved writing sections of text on hundreds of index cards which he expanded into paragraphs and chapters and rearranged to form the structure of his novels a process that has been adopted by many screenplay writers in subsequent years 28 Nabokov published under the pseudonym Vladimir Sirin in the 1920s to 1940s occasionally to mask his identity from critics 37 He also makes cameo appearances in some of his novels such as the character Vivian Darkbloom an anagram of Vladimir Nabokov who appears in both Lolita and Ada or Ardor and the character Blavdak Vinomori another anagram of Nabokov s name in King Queen Knave Sirin is referenced as a different emigre author in his memoir and is also referenced in Pnin Nabokov is noted for his complex plots clever word play daring metaphors and prose style capable of both parody and intense lyricism He gained both fame and notoriety with his novel Lolita 1955 which tells of a grown man s devouring passion for a twelve year old girl This and his other novels particularly Pale Fire 1962 won him a place among the greatest novelists of the 20th century His longest novel which met with a mixed response is Ada 1969 He devoted more time to the composition of this novel than any of his others Nabokov s fiction is characterized by linguistic playfulness For example his short story The Vane Sisters is famous in part for its acrostic final paragraph in which the first letters of each word spell out a message from beyond the grave In another of his short stories Signs and Symbols 1958 Nabokov creates a character suffering from an imaginary illness called Referential Mania in which the afflicted is faced with a world of environmental objects exchanging coded messages 38 Nabokov s stature as a literary critic is founded largely on his four volume translation and commentary for Alexander Pushkin s novel in verse Eugene Onegin published in 1964 That commentary ended with an appendix titled Notes on Prosody which has developed a reputation of its own It stemmed from his observation that while Pushkin s iambic tetrameters had been a part of Russian literature for a fairly short two centuries they were clearly understood by the Russian prosodists On the other hand he viewed the much older English iambic tetrameters as muddled and poorly documented In his own words I have been forced to invent a simple little terminology of my own explain its application to English verse forms and indulge in certain rather copious details of classification before even tackling the limited object of these notes to my translation of Pushkin s Eugene Onegin an object that boils down to very little in comparison to the forced preliminaries namely to a few things that the non Russian student of Russian literature must know in regard to Russian prosody in general and to Eugene Onegin in particular Nabokov s lectures at Cornell University as collected in Lectures on Literature reveal his controversial ideas concerning art 39 He firmly believed that novels should not aim to teach and that readers should not merely empathize with characters but that a higher aesthetic enjoyment should be attained partly by paying great attention to details of style and structure He detested what he saw as general ideas in novels and so when teaching Ulysses for example he would insist students keep an eye on where the characters were in Dublin with the aid of a map rather than teaching the complex Irish history that many critics see as being essential to an understanding of the novel 40 In 2010 Kitsch magazine a student publication at Cornell published a piece that focused on student reflections on his lectures and also explored Nabokov s long relationship with Playboy 41 Nabokov also wanted his students to describe the details of the novels rather than a narrative of the story and was very strict when it came to grading As Edward Jay Epstein described his experience in Nabokov s classes Nabokov made it clear from the very first lectures that he had little interest in fraternizing with students who would be known not by their name but by their seat number 42 Synesthesia EditNabokov was a self described synesthete who at a young age equated the number five with the colour red 43 Aspects of synesthesia can be found in several of his works His wife also exhibited synesthesia like her husband her mind s eye associated colours with particular letters They discovered that Dmitri shared the trait and moreover that the colours he associated with some letters were in some cases blends of his parents hues which is as if genes were painting in aquarelle 44 For some synesthetes letters are not simply associated with certain colors they are themselves colored Nabokov frequently endowed his protagonists with a similar gift In Bend Sinister Krug comments on his perception of the word loyalty as being like a golden fork lying out in the sun In The Defense Nabokov mentioned briefly how the main character s father a writer found he was unable to complete a novel that he planned to write becoming lost in the fabricated storyline by starting with colors Many other subtle references are made in Nabokov s writing that can be traced back to his synesthesia Many of his characters have a distinct sensory appetite reminiscent of synesthesia 45 Entomology EditNabokov s interest in entomology had been inspired by books of Maria Sibylla Merian he had found in the attic of his family s country home in Vyra 46 Throughout an extensive career of collecting he never learned to drive a car and he depended on his wife Vera to take him to collecting sites During the 1940s as a research fellow in zoology he was responsible for organizing the butterfly collection of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University His writings in this area were highly technical This combined with his specialty in the relatively unspectacular tribe Polyommatini of the family Lycaenidae has left this facet of his life little explored by most admirers of his literary works He described the Karner blue The genus Nabokovia was named after him in honor of this work as were a number of butterfly and moth species e g many species in the genera Madeleinea and Pseudolucia bear epithets alluding to Nabokov or names from his novels 47 In 1967 Nabokov commented The pleasures and rewards of literary inspiration are nothing beside the rapture of discovering a new organ under the microscope or an undescribed species on a mountainside in Iran or Peru It is not improbable that had there been no revolution in Russia I would have devoted myself entirely to lepidopterology and never written any novels at all 28 The paleontologist and essayist Stephen Jay Gould discussed Nabokov s lepidoptery in his essay No Science Without Fancy No Art Without Facts The Lepidoptery of Vladimir Nabokov reprinted in I Have Landed Gould notes that Nabokov was occasionally a scientific stick in the mud For example Nabokov never accepted that genetics or the counting of chromosomes could be a valid way to distinguish species of insects and relied on the traditional for lepidopterists microscopic comparison of their genitalia The Harvard Museum of Natural History which now contains the Museum of Comparative Zoology still possesses Nabokov s genitalia cabinet where the author stored his collection of male blue butterfly genitalia 48 49 Nabokov was a serious taxonomist says museum staff writer Nancy Pick author of The Rarest of the Rare Stories Behind the Treasures at the Harvard Museum of Natural History He actually did quite a good job at distinguishing species that you would not think were different by looking at their genitalia under a microscope six hours a day seven days a week until his eyesight was permanently impaired 49 The rest of his collection about 4 300 specimens was given to the Lausanne s Museum of Zoology in Switzerland Though his work was not taken seriously by professional lepidopterists during his life new genetic research supports Nabokov s hypothesis that a group of butterfly species called the Polyommatus blues came to the New World over the Bering Strait in five waves eventually reaching Chile 50 Many of Nabokov s fans have tried to ascribe literary value to his scientific papers Gould notes Conversely others have claimed that his scientific work enriched his literary output Gould advocates a third view holding that the other two positions are examples of the post hoc ergo propter hoc fallacy Rather than assuming that either side of Nabokov s work caused or stimulated the other Gould proposes that both stemmed from Nabokov s love of detail contemplation and symmetry Chess problems EditNabokov spent considerable time during his exile composing chess problems which he published in Germany s Russian emigre press Poems and Problems 18 problems and Speak Memory one He describes the process of composing and constructing in his memoir The strain on the mind is formidable the element of time drops out of one s consciousness To him the originality invention conciseness harmony complexity and splendid insincerity of creating a chess problem was similar to that in any other art Politics and views EditRussian politics Edit Russia has always been a curiously unpleasant country despite her great literature Unfortunately Russians today have completely lost their ability to kill tyrants Vladimir Nabokov 9 21 Nabokov was a classical liberal in the tradition of his father a liberal statesman who served in the Provisional Government following the February Revolution of 1917 as a member of the Constitutional Democratic Party 51 52 In Speak Memory Nabokov proudly recounted his father s campaigns against despotism and staunch opposition to capital punishment 53 Nabokov was a self proclaimed White Russian 28 and was from its inception a strong opponent of the Soviet government that came to power following the Bolshevik Revolution of October 1917 In a poem he wrote as a teenager in 1917 he described Lenin s Bolsheviks as grey rag tag people 54 Throughout his life Nabokov would remain committed to the classical liberal political philosophy of his father and equally opposed Tsarist autocracy communism and fascism 9 24 36 Nabokov s father Vladimir Dmitrievich Nabokov was the most outspoken defender of Jewish rights in the Russian Empire continuing in a family tradition that had been led by his own father Dmitry Nabokov who as Justice Minister under Tsar Alexander II had successfully blocked anti semitic measures from being passed by the Interior Minister That family strain would continue in Vladimir Nabokov who fiercely denounced anti semitism in his writings and in the 1930s Nabokov was able to escape Hitler s Germany only with the help of Russian Jewish emigres who still had grateful memories of his family s defense of Jews in Tsarist times 9 24 When asked in 1969 whether he would like to revisit the land he had fled in 1918 now the Soviet Union he replied There s nothing to look at New tenement houses and old churches do not interest me The hotels there are terrible I detest the Soviet theater Any palace in Italy is superior to the repainted abodes of the Tsars The village huts in the forbidden hinterland are as dismally poor as ever and the wretched peasant flogs his wretched cart horse with the same wretched zest As to my special northern landscape and the haunts of my childhood well I would not wish to contaminate their images preserved in my mind 52 148 American politics Edit In the 1940s as an emigre in America Nabokov would stress the connection between American and English liberal democracy and the aspirations of the short lived Russian provisional government In 1942 he declared Democracy is humanity at its best it is the natural condition of every man ever since the human mind became conscious not only of the world but of itself 55 During the 1960s in both letters and interviews he reveals a profound contempt for the New Left movements describing the protesters as conformists and goofy hoodlums 52 139 56 In a 1967 interview Nabokov stated that he refused to associate with supporters of Bolshevism or Tsarist autocracy but that he had friends among intellectual constitutional monarchists as well as among intellectual social revolutionaries 57 Nabokov supported the Vietnam War effort and voiced admiration for both Presidents Lyndon B Johnson and Richard Nixon 56 58 59 60 Racism against African Americans appalled Nabokov who touted Alexander Pushkin s multiracial background as an argument against segregation 58 Religion Edit In his religious views Nabokov was an agnostic 61 Nabokov was very open about and received criticism over his utter indifference to organized mysticism to religion and to the church any church 62 Sleep Edit Nabokov was a notorious lifelong insomniac who admitted unease at the prospect of sleep famously stating that the night is always a giant 63 His insomnia contributed to an enlarged prostate later in life which only exacerbated his sleeplessness 64 Nabokov called sleep a moronic fraternity mental torture and a nightly betrayal of reason humanity genius 65 Insomnia s impact on his work was widely explored and in 2017 Princeton University Press published a compilation of his dream diary entries Insomniac Dreams Experiments with Time by Vladimir Nabokov 66 Views on women writers Edit Nabokov s wife Vera was his strongest supporter and assisted him throughout his lifetime but Nabokov admitted to having a prejudice against women writers He wrote to Edmund Wilson who had been making suggestions for his lectures I dislike Jane Austen and am prejudiced in fact against all women writers They are in another class 34 67 But after rereading Austen s Mansfield Park he changed his mind and taught it in his literature course he also praised Mary McCarthy s work and described Marina Tsvetaeva as a poet of genius in Speak Memory 34 274 Although Vera worked as his personal translator and secretary he made publicly known that his ideal translator would be male and especially not a Russian born female 68 69 In the first chapter of Glory he attributes the protagonist s similar prejudice to the impressions made by children s writers like Lidiya Charski 70 and in the short story The Admiralty Spire deplores the posturing snobbery antisemitism and cutesiness he considered characteristic of Russian women authors disputed discuss Influence Edit Monument of Nabokov in Montreux External video Nabokov Centenary Celebration hosted by New Yorker magazine April 15 1999 C SPAN The Russian literary critic Yuly Aykhenvald was an early admirer of Nabokov citing in particular his ability to imbue objects with life he saturates trivial things with life sense and psychology and gives a mind to objects his refined senses notice colorations and nuances smells and sounds and everything acquires an unexpected meaning and truth under his gaze and through his words 71 The critic James Wood argued that Nabokov s use of descriptive detail proved an overpowering and not always very fruitful influence on two or three generations after him including authors such as Martin Amis and John Updike 72 While a student at Cornell in the 1950s Thomas Pynchon attended several of Nabokov s lectures 73 and alluded to Lolita in chapter six of his novel The Crying of Lot 49 1966 in which Serge counter tenor in the band the Paranoids sings What chance has a lonely surfer boy For the love of a surfer chick With all these Humbert Humbert cats Coming on so big and sick For me my baby was a woman For him she s just another nymphet It has also been argued that Pynchon s prose style is influenced by Nabokov s preference for actualism over realism 74 Of the authors who came to prominence during Nabokov s lifetime John Banville 75 Don DeLillo 76 Salman Rushdie 77 and Edmund White 78 were all influenced by him The novelist John Hawkes took inspiration from Nabokov and considered himself his follower Nabokov s story Signs and Symbols was on the reading list for Hawkes s writing students at Brown University A writer who truly and greatly sustains us is Vladimir Nabokov Hawkes stated in a 1964 interview 79 Several authors who came to prominence in the 1990s and 2000s have also cited Nabokov s work as a literary influence Aleksandar Hemon whose high wire wordplay and sense of the absurd are often compared to Nabokov s has acknowledged the latter s impact on his writing citation needed Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Michael Chabon listed Lolita and Pale Fire among the books that I thought changed my life when I read them 80 and stated that Nabokov s English combines aching lyricism with dispassionate precision in a way that seems to render every human emotion in all its intensity but never with an ounce of schmaltz or soggy language 81 Pulitzer Prize winner Jeffrey Eugenides said that Nabokov has always been and remains one of my favorite writers He s able to juggle ten balls where most people can juggle three or four 82 dubious discuss T Coraghessan Boyle said that Nabokov s playfulness and the ravishing beauty of his prose are ongoing influences on his writing 83 and Marisha Pessl has also been influenced by Nabokov 84 Nabokov appears in W G Sebald s 1993 novel The Emigrants 85 Adaptations EditThe song cycle Sing Poetry on the 2011 contemporary classical album Troika comprises settings of Russian and English versions of three of Nabokov s poems by such composers as Jay Greenberg Michael Schelle and Lev Zhurbin List of works EditMain article Vladimir Nabokov bibliographyNotes Edit a b c Confusion over his birth date was generated by some people misunderstanding the relationship between the Julian and Gregorian calendars At the time of Nabokov s birth the offset between the calendars was 12 days His date of birth in the Julian calendar was 10 April 1899 in the Gregorian 22 April 1899 86 The fact that the offset increased from 12 to 13 days for dates occurring after February 1900 was always irrelevant to earlier dates and hence a 13 day offset should never have been applied to Nabokov s date of birth Nevertheless it was so misapplied by some writers and 23 April came to be erroneously shown in many places as his birthday In his memoirs Speak Memory Nabokov indicates that 22 April was the correct date but that he nevertheless preferred to celebrate his birthday with diminishing pomp on 23 April p 6 vague As he happily pointed out on several occasions during interviews this meant he also shared a birthday with William Shakespeare and Shirley Temple 9 87 British English ˈ n ae b e k ɒ f n e ˈ b oʊ k ɒ f ˈ b ɒ k NAB e kof ne BO H K of American English ˈ n ɑː b e k ɔː f ˈ n ae b n e ˈ b ɔː k e f NA H B e KAWF ne BAW kef 1 2 3 4 5 References Edit Nabokov The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language 5th ed Boston Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Retrieved 9 September 2019 Nabokov Collins English Dictionary HarperCollins Retrieved 9 September 2019 Nabokov Vladimir Lexico UK Dictionary Oxford University Press Retrieved 9 September 2019 Nabokov Merriam Webster Dictionary Retrieved 9 September 2019 Nabokov Vladimir Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English Longman Retrieved 9 September 2019 100 Best Novels randomhouse com Modern Library 2007 Retrieved 12 February 2009 100 Best Nonfiction randomhouse com Modern Library 2007 Retrieved 12 February 2009 Nabokov Vladimir Vladimirovich 1951 Speak Memory A Memoir Gollancz p 37 a b c d e Boyd Brian 1990 Vladimir Nabokov The Russian Years Princeton University Press ISBN 978 0 7011 3700 7 Wyllie Barbara 2010 Vladimir Nabokov Reaktion Books p 7 ISBN 9781861896605 Vladimir Nabokov American author Encyclopaedia Britannica Retrieved 3 May 2016 Giroud Vincent 2015 Nicolas Nabokov A Life in Freedom and Music Oxford University Press p 2 Sciabarra Chris Matthew 2013 Ayn Rand The Russian Radical Penn State Press pp 66 367 68 Gladstein Mimi Reisel 2009 Ayn Rand Major Conservative and Libertarian Thinkers New York Continuum p 2 ISBN 978 0 8264 4513 1 Karlinsky Simon 25 June 2008 Cycnos NABOKOV At the Crossroads of Modernism and Postmodernism Retrieved 5 December 2015 Cite journal requires journal help a b c d e Amis Martin 1994 1993 Visiting Mrs Nabokov And Other Excursions reprint ed Penguin Books pp 115 18 ISBN 978 0 14 023858 7 Zimmer Dieter E 15 July 2002 Presentation of the book Nabokov s Berlin The International Vladimir Nabokov Symposium St Petersburg Schiff Stacy Vera chapter 1 para 6 The New York Times Heinegg Peter 18 September 1986 The Enchanter by Vladimir Nabokov translated by Dmitri Navokov Los Angeles Times Cahill Sarah 9 July 1987 Reading The First Throb of Lolita Chicago Reader Retrieved 3 September 2021 Grossman Lev 18 May 2000 The gay Nabokov Salon retrieved 8 December 2013 Nabokov s Type Lysandra cormion Retrieved 18 April 2013 Nabokov Scientist Natural History July 1999 Supreme Court Interviews LawProse org Retrieved 5 December 2015 Vera Nabokov 89 Wife Muse and Agent The New York Times 11 April 1991 Boyd Brian Vladimir Nabokov The American Years pp 170 601 Dodge Dani 5 November 2006 Snapshot Nabokov s Retreat Mail Tribune Medford Oregon Ashland Oregon p 2 Archived from the original on 2 December 2010 Retrieved 9 August 2018 a b c d Nabokov Vladimir Summer Fall 1967 Vladimir Nabokov The Art of Fiction No 40 The Paris Review Interview 41 Interviewed by Herbert Gold Retrieved 5 June 2018 McCrum Robert 25 October 2009 The Final Twist in Nabokov s Untold Story The Observer via theguardian com a b c Alexandrov Vladimir E ed 1995 The Garland Companion to Vladimir Nabokov New York Garland Publishing ISBN 978 0 8153 0354 1 Connolly Kate 22 April 2008 Nabokov s last work will not be burned The Guardian UK Archived from the original on 24 July 2008 Retrieved 24 June 2008 Interview with Dmitri Nabokov NPR org 30 April 2008 https www webcitation org 5lK6d8XEx url http www google com hostednews afp article ALeqM5iBxjF8uCw6NIn9hlD 8tEsKhlALA a b c d Nabokov Vladimir 2001 Karlinsky Simon ed Dear Bunny Dear Volodya The Nabokov Wilson Letters 1940 1971 Revised ed Berkeley University of California Press 268 Updike John Hugging the Shore p 221 Toffler Alvin Playboy interview Vladimir Nabokov Playboy Playboy Retrieved 5 December 2013 Whiteman Alden 5 July 1977 Vladimir Nabokov Author of Lolita and Ada Is Dead The New York Times Retrieved 10 February 2009 Wershler Darren 2010 The Locative the Ambient and the Hallucinatory in the Internet of Things Design and Culture 2 2 199 216 doi 10 2752 175470710X12696138525703 S2CID 144607114 Strehle Susan 1971 Actualism Pynchon s Debt to Nabokov University of Wisconsin Press pp 37 38 Collected by Fredson Bowers in 1980 and published by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Kitsch Magazine Retrieved 5 December 2015 Epstein Edward Jay 4 April 2013 An A from Nabokov The New York Review of Books Retrieved 5 June 2018 Martin Patrick Synaesthesia metaphor and right brain functioning in Egoist Nabokov s interview BBC Television 1962 Retrieved 5 December 2015 via kulichki com Foster John Burt 1993 Nabokov s Art of Memory and European Modernism Princeton University Press pp 26 32 ISBN 9780691069715 Todd Kim 2007 Chrysalis Maria Sibylla Merian and the Secrets of Metamorphosis Harcourt p 11 ISBN 978 0 15 101108 7 Butterflies and moths bearing Nabokov s name libraries psu edu Zembla 1996 Retrieved 12 February 2009 Pick Nancy Sloan Mark 2004 The Rarest of the Rare Stories Behind the Treasures at the Harvard Museum of Natural History Harper ISBN 978 0 06 053718 0 Retrieved 10 March 2010 a b Pick Nancy Spring 2005 Blood Sweat and Bones PDF Colloquy Alumni Quarterly 8 Archived from the original PDF on 8 September 2015 Retrieved 19 November 2014 Zimmer Carl 25 January 2011 Nabokov Theory on Butterfly Evolution Is Vindicated The New York Times Retrieved 25 January 2011 Dragunoiu Dana 2011 Vladimir Nabokov and the Poetics of Liberalism Northwestern University Press p 17 a b c Nabokov Vladimir 1990 Strong opinions Vintage Books Dragunoiu Dana 2011 Vladimir Nabokov and the Poetics of Liberalism Northwestern University Press p 29 Wyllie Barbara 2010 Vladimir Nabokov London p 22 ISBN 9781861896605 Boyd Brian 2016 Vladimir Nabokov The American Years Princeton University Press p 41 a b Larmour David Henry James 2002 Discourse and ideology in Nabokov s prose Routledge p 17 ISBN 9780415286589 Pifer Ellen 2003 Vladimir Nabokov s Lolita A Casebook Oxford University Press pp 195 199 a b Pitzer Andrea 2013 The Secret History of Vladimir Nabokov Open Road Media page needed Schiff Stacy 2000 Vera Mrs Vladimir Nabokov Random House Digital page needed Epstein Jacob 2002 Book business publishing past present and future W W Norton pp 76 77 ISBN 9780393322347 Morton Donald E 1974 Vladimir Nabokov F Ungar Publishing Company p 8 ISBN 9780804426381 Nabokov is a self affirmed agnostic in matters religious political and philosophical Playboy Interview Vladimir Nabokov Atavist 16 August 2016 Retrieved 5 August 2020 Parkin Simon 14 September 2018 Finally a cure for insomnia The Guardian ISSN 0261 3077 Retrieved 3 July 2020 Piepenbring Dan 8 February 2018 The Enthralling Anxious World of Vladimir Nabokov s Dreams The New Yorker ISSN 0028 792X Retrieved 23 November 2019 For three months in 1964 Vladimir Nabokov wrote down his dreams every morning pursuing a theory that time flows backward The Vintage News 19 December 2017 Retrieved 23 November 2019 Nabokov Vladimir 2017 Barabtarlo Gennady ed Insomniac Dreams Princeton University Press ISBN 978 0 691 16794 7 Frank Siggy 2012 Nabokov s Theatrical Imagination Cambridge University Press p 170 Pifer Ellen 1999 Connolly Julian W ed Her monster his nymphet Nabokov and Mary Shelley Nabokov and His Fiction New Perspectives 158 176 doi 10 1017 CBO9780511597718 010 ISBN 9780521632836 Rutledge David S 2011 fn 7 Nabokov s Permanent Mystery The Expression of Metaphysics in His Work Jefferson North Carolina McFarland amp Company p 187 ISBN 9780786460762 From Chapter 1 Martin s first books were in English his mother loathed the Russian magazine for children Zadushevnoe Slovo The Heartfelt Word and inspired in him such aversion for Madame Charski s young heroines with dusky complexions and titles that even later Martin was wary of any book written by a woman sensing even in the best of such books an unconscious urge on the part of a middle aged and perhaps chubby lady to dress up in a pretty name and curl up on the sofa like a pussy cat Chamberlain Lesley 2006 The Philosophy Steamer Great Britain Atlantic Books p 283 ISBN 978 184354 093 9 Wood James Discussing Nabokov Slate Retrieved 12 April 2008 Siegel Jules Who is Thomas Pynchon and why did he take off with my wife Playboy March 1977 Strehle Susan Actualism Pynchon s Debt to Nabokov Contemporary Literature 24 1 Spring 1983 pp 30 50 John Banville The Guardian Retrieved 12 April 2008 Gussow Mel Toasting and Analyzing Nabokov Cornell Honors the Renaissance Man Who oh Yes Wrote Lolita The New York Times 15 September 1998 Lowery George 23 October 2007 Bombs bands and birds recalled as novelist Salman Rushdie trips down memory lane Cornell Chronicle Cornell University Retrieved 12 February 2009 An Interview with Edmund White Bookslut com February 2007 Retrieved 12 April 2008 John Hawkes An Interview 20 March 1964 John J Enck and John Hawkes Wisconsin Studies in Contemporary Literature 6 2 summer 1965 144 See also Maxim D Shrayer Writing in Tongues Brown Alumni Monthly September October 2017 Bez Nabokova Snob ru 2 July 2017 Chabon Michael July 2006 It Changed My Life michaelchabon com Archived from the original on 20 July 2006 Retrieved 12 February 2009 Stringer Hye Suellen VN Collation No 26 Zembla Retrieved 12 February 2009 Q amp A with Jeffrey Eugenides fifthestate co uk 12 April 2008 Archived from the original on 2 February 2008 A Conversation with T C Boyle penguingroup com Penguin Reading Guides Archived from the original on 11 December 2004 An interview with Marisha Pessl Bookslut com September 2006 Retrieved 15 June 2007 Cohen Lisa February March 1997 Review The Emigrants by W G Sebald Boston Review Brian Boyd p 37 Whitman Alden 23 April 1969 Interview with Vladimir Nabokov The New York Times p 20 Further reading EditBiography Edit Boyd Brian Vladimir Nabokov The Russian Years Princeton N J Princeton University Press 1990 ISBN 0 691 06794 5 hardback 1997 ISBN 0 691 02470 7 paperback London Chatto amp Windus 1990 ISBN 0 7011 3700 2 hardback Boyd Brian 1991 Vladimir Nabokov the American years Princeton N J Princeton University Press ISBN 069106797X OCLC 22906836 Chien Evelyn Nien Ming 2005 A Shuttlecock Over the Atlantic Weird English Cambridge Massachusetts London Harvard University Press ISBN 978 0 674 01819 8 Field Andrew VN The Life and Art of Vladimir Nabokov New York Crown Publishers 1986 ISBN 0 517 56113 1 Golla Robert Conversations with Vladimir Nabokov Jackson University Press of Mississippi 2017 ISBN 978 1496810953 Parker Stephen Jan Understanding Vladimir Nabokov Columbia University of South Carolina Press 1987 ISBN 978 0872494954 Proffer Elendea ed Vladimir Nabokov A Pictorial Biography Ann Arbor Mich Ardis 1991 ISBN 0 87501 078 4 a collection of photographs Rivers J E and Nicol Charles Nabokov s Fifth Arc Austin TX University of Texas Press 1982 ISBN 978 0 292 75522 2 Schiff Stacy Vera Mrs Vladimir Nabokov New York NY Random House 1999 ISBN 0 679 44790 3 Criticism Edit Alexandrov Vladimir E 1991 Nabokov s otherworld Princeton N J Princeton University Press ISBN 978 0 691 06866 4 Bader Julia 1972 Crystal land artifice in Nabokov s English novels Berkeley University of California Press ISBN 978 0 520 02167 9 Barabtarlo Gennady 1989 Phantom of fact a guide to Nabokov s Pnin Ann Arbor Ardis ISBN 978 0 87501 060 1 Blackwell Stephen H 2009 The quill and the scalpel Nabokov s art and the worlds of science Columbus Ohio State University Press ISBN 978 0 8142 1099 4 Boyd Brian 1999 Nabokov s Pale fire the magic of artistic discovery Princeton NJ Princeton University Press ISBN 978 0 691 00959 9 Connolly Julian W 2009 A reader s guide to Nabokov s Lolita Studies in Russian and Slavic literatures cultures and history Boston Academic Studies Press ISBN 978 1 934843 65 9 Foster John Burt 1993 Nabokov s art of memory and European modernism Princeton N J Princeton University Press ISBN 978 0 691 06971 5 Hardy James D Martin Ann 2011 Light of my life love time and memory in Nabokov s Lolita Jefferson N C London McFarland amp Co ISBN 978 0 7864 6357 2 Johnson Donald B 1985 Worlds in regression some novels of Vladimir Nabokov Ann Arbor Ardis ISBN 978 0 88233 908 5 Livry Anatoly Nabokov le Nietzscheen HERMANN Paris 2010 in French Livri Anatolij Fiziologiya Sverhcheloveka Vvedenie v trete tysyacheletie SPb Aletejya 2011 312 s https web archive org web 20110816062952 http exlibris ng ru non fiction 2011 06 02 6 game html Meyer Priscilla 1988 Find what the sailor has hidden Vladimir Nabokov s Pale fire 1st ed Middletown Conn Wesleyan University Press ISBN 978 0 8195 5206 8 Morris Paul Duncan 2010 Vladimir Nabokov poetry and the lyric voice Toronto Buffalo University of Toronto Press ISBN 978 1 4426 4020 7 Nicol Charles Barabtarlo Gennady eds 1993 A Small Alpine form studies in Nabokov s short fiction Garland reference library of the humanities New York Garland ISBN 978 0 8153 0857 7 Pifer Ellen 1980 Nabokov and the novel Cambridge Massachusetts Harvard University Press ISBN 978 0 674 59840 9 Rutledge David S 2011 Nabokov s permanent mystery the expression of metaphysics in his work Jefferson N C McFarland amp Co ISBN 978 0 7864 6076 2 Schuman Samuel 2014 Nabokov s Shakespeare New York Bloomsbury ISBN 978 1 62892 426 8 Shrayer Maxim D 1998 The World of Nabokov s Stories Literary modernism series Austin University of Texas Press ISBN 978 0 292 77733 0 Julian W Connolly ed 1999 Jewish Questions in Nabokov s Life and Art Nabokov and his fiction new perspectives Cambridge studies in Russian literature Cambridge New York Cambridge University Press pp 73 91 ISBN 978 0 521 63283 6 Toker Leona 1989 Nabokov the mystery of literary structures Ithaca Cornell University Press ISBN 978 0 8014 2211 9 Trousdale Rachel 2010 Nabokov Rushdie and the transnational imagination novels of exile and alternate worlds 1st ed New York Palgrave Macmillan ISBN 978 0 230 10261 3 Wood Michael 1995 The magician s doubts Nabokov and the risks of fiction Princeton N J Princeton University Press ISBN 978 0 691 00632 1 Azam Zanganeh Lila 2011 The enchanter Nabokov and happiness 1st ed New York W W Norton amp Co ISBN 978 0 393 07992 0 Bibliography Edit Juliar Michael Vladimir Nabokov A Descriptive Bibliography New York Garland Publishing 1986 ISBN 0 8240 8590 6 Montalban Manuel Vazquez Glasauer Willi Escenas de la Literatura Universal y Retratos de Grandes Autores Barcelona Circulo de Lectores 1988 Alexandrov Vladimir E ed The Garland Companion to Vladimir Nabokov New York Garland Publishing 1995 ISBN 0 8153 0354 8 Funke Sarah Vera s Butterflies First Editions by Vladimir Nabokov Inscribed to his Wife New York Glenn Horowitz Bookseller 1999 ISBN 0 9654020 1 0 Media adaptations Edit Peter Medak s short television film Nabokov on Kafka is a dramatisation of Nabokov s lectures on Franz Kafka s The Metamorphosis The part of Nabokov is played by Christopher Plummer Nabokov makes three cameo appearances at widely scattered points in his life in W G Sebald s The Emigrants See Lolita In 1972 the novel King Queen Knave was released as a movie directed by Jerzy Skolimowski and starring Gina Lollobrigida David Niven and John Moulder Brown In 1978 the novel Despair was adapted by Tom Stoppard for the movie directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder In 1986 his first novel Mary in Russian Maschenka was loosely adapted for the movie Maschenka starring Cary Elwes The novel The Defense was adapted as a feature film The Luzhin Defence in 2000 by director Marleen Gorris The film starred John Turturro and Emily Watson Entomology Edit Johnson Kurt and Steve Coates Nabokov s blues The scientific odyssey of a literary genius New York McGraw Hill ISBN 0 07 137330 6 very accessibly written Sartori Michel ed Les Papillons de Nabokov The butterflies of Nabokov Lausanne Musee cantonal de Zoologie 1993 ISBN 2 9700051 0 7 exhibition catalogue primarily in English Zimmer Dieter E A Guide to Nabokov s Butterflies and Moths Privately published 2001 ISBN 3 00 007609 3 web page Other Edit Deroy Chloe Vladimir Nabokov Icare russe et Phenix americain 2010 Dijon EUD Gezari Janet K Wimsatt W K Vladimir Nabokov More Chess Problems and the Novel Yale French Studies No 58 In Memory of Jacques Ehrmann Inside Play Outside Game 1979 pp 102 115 Yale University Press External links EditWikiquote has quotations related to Vladimir NabokovWikimedia Commons has media related to Vladimir Nabokov Vladimir Nabokov org Site of the Vladimir Nabokov French Society Enchanted Researchers Societe francaise Vladimir Nabokov Les Chercheurs Enchantes Nabokov under Glass New York Public Library exhibit Herbert Gold Summer Fall 1967 Vladimir Nabokov The Art of Fiction No 40 The Paris Review Summer Fall 1967 41 The Atlantic Monthly Review of Nabokov s Butterflies The Life and Works of Vladimir Nabokov The New York Public Library profile and lectures 2002 Works by or about Vladimir Nabokov in libraries WorldCat catalog Vladimir Nabokov at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database Vladimir Nabokov poetry in Russian Don Reynolds Vladimir Nabokov The Oregon Encyclopedia Nabokov Online Journal The problem with Nabokov By Martin Amis 14 November 2009 Talking about Nabokov George Feifer Russia Beyond the Headlines 24 February 2010 The Gay Nabokov Salon Magazine 17 May 2000 BBC interviews 4 October 1969 Nabokov Bibliography All About Vladimir Nabokov in Print Works by or about Vladimir Nabokov at Internet Archive Vladmir Nabokov chess compositions at YACPDB Retrieved from https en wikipedia org w index php title Vladimir Nabokov amp oldid 1049802613, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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