Sunday, December 26, 2010


Vladimir Nabokov's book of interviews, letters to the editor, and editorials establishes the following: Nabokov... 1) is a genius; 2) knows that he is a genius; 3) doesn't usually make any aesthetic or intellectual compromises; 4) hates communism and other forms of political dictatorship; 5) eschews literary trends and labels and schools; 6) is proud of his scientific publications about butterflies; 7) loves America; 8) thinks The Gift is his best Russian book and Lolita may be his best overall book; 9) believes that Russian liberalism was vibrant on the eve of the Revolution; 10) believes he is better than most other major European or American authors, living or dead; 11) is confident about his translations, and also about his philosophy of translation; 12) is contemptuous of other people's translations; 13) is not interested in religion; 14) dislikes interviews and interviewers, by and large; 15) has a well-established creative process and philosophy of literature; 16) is not particularly found of literary criticism; loathes Freud, Marx, Sartre, et cetera and so on.

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