Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0003193, Tue, 30 Jun 1998 17:33:32 -0700

Twentieth Anniversary Issue of THE NABOKOVIAN
v Shortly after Nabokov's death twenty-one years ago, Slavist Steve
Parker, an ex-student of Nabokov and author of one of the first VN
dissertations, and English literature scholar, Charles Nicol, also recent
author of another VN dissertation, had a talk during an MLA session. The
topic was the insularity of the young field of Nabokov studies. Scholars
of English were generally unfamiliar with VN's Russian background, while
Russianists were sometimes unaware of the work of English-language
critics. The critical studies of each group rarely appeared in the same
journals. The International Vladimir Nabokov Society (IVNS) was born out
of this discussion. The first concrete steps of the new society were the
launching of THE NABOKOVIAN (then called _The Vladimir Nabokov
Newsletter_) by Steve Parker (with Nicol as Annotations Editor) and a
Society Constitution mostly drafted by Nicol. After extended negotiations,
the young organization established affiliations with the MLA (thanks to
Sam Schuman) and with AATSEEL (Parker) and began sponsoring conference
sessions that played a major role in fulfilling the society's original aim
-- to bring together Nabokov scholars from different fields and different
countries. THE NABOKOVIAN, under Parker's editorial guidance, has expanded
from a newsletter to a substantial publication that continues
to occupy a central place in the Society's activities.
Subscription to THE NABOKOVIAN, which comes out twice yearly, is
automatic with membership in the IVNS -- a modest $15 per annum.
The notes below briefly summarize the contents of issue #40 (Spring 1998)
and serve to give an idea of the diversity and richness of its contents.

(#40, Spring 1998)

"News of the Field" by Steve Parker.
A survey of conference activities, national and international;news about
the Schiff/Lyne LOLITA film and the restoration of the Nabokov country
estate; upcoming centenary events; and the President's report on the
Society's activities in 1997.

"Two Poems"
A 1929 and a 1967 VN poems in the original Russian with English
translations by Dmitri Nabokov.

"Annotations & Queries," edited by Gennady Barabtarlo
"Icicles in "The Vane Sisters'" by Seiji Kurata, UC, Berkeley
Proposes a French deciphering in addition to the encoded
English message
"Curious Conjunctions in Nabokov's Collected Stories," by Sam Schuman
Examples of the improbable fact that in VN's
chronologically "Collected Stories" the ending of one
story dovetails into the following one.
"A Note on the Name 'Humbert," by Andrew Wise
Re a turn-of-the century scam artist in London & Paris
"The Police Department of my Soul: Aleksandr Blok in "'Invitation
to a Beheading,'" by Savelii Senderovich & Yelena Shvarts
Blok was one of the young VN's favorite poets. The essay
traces a number of Blok allusions in VN's novel.
"The Fourth Chapter of THE GIFT: Inserted or Concerted?," by
Gerard De Vries
A close examination of the inter-echoes between Fyodor's
biography of Chernyshevsky and the rest of THE GIFT
"Three Notes on THE GIFT: A Mutation, An Intertext, and a Puzzle,"
by Stephen Blackwell.

"A Letter to Edward C. Sampson"
A 1949 letter from VN advising a prospective grad student to steer
clear of Dostoevsky. Sampson identifies himself as the unnamed student in
several accounts who suggested Leonov as an example of a writer influenced
by Dostoevsky.

"A Dozen Notes to Nabokov's Short Stories," by Maxim D. Shrayer
Shrayer, a leading student of VN's Russian stories, offers many
nuggets here.

"Annotations to ADA (#11): Part I, Chapter 11," by Brian Boyd
Nabokov biographer, Brian Boyd, offers another in his series of
annotations of Nabokov's longest novel. Anyone who writes about ADA
without checking Boyd's series of annotations is in great danger of making
a fool of him or herself.
"Abstracts from the Nabokov Society Session at the 1997 MLA Convention"
1. "Lolita of the Limberlost," by D. Barton Johnson
2. "Possible Worlds and Nabokov's Novels," by Cary Henson
3. "Editing Nabokov at the New Yorker: The Letters of VN and
William Maxwell," by Barbara Burkhardt
4. "Nabokov and Comic Art," by Gavriel Shapiro

(Additional abstracts are listed in an immediately following posting.)
The International Vladimir Society is open to anyone interested in
Nabokov. To join and subscribe to THE NABOKOVIAN, individuals should send
a $15 check made out to "The Vladimir Nabokov Society" and send it to:

Slavic Languages and Literatures
University of Kansas
Lawrence, Kansas 66045

Back issues are available for most issues. An index to the first 30
numbers is available at:

http: //www.libraries.psu.edu/iasweb/nabokov/nsintro.htm

Requests forfurth information may be addressed to me.

D. Barton Johnson Department of Germanic, Slavic and Semitic Studies
Phelps Hall University of California at Santa Barbara Santa Barbara, CA
93106 Phone and Fax: (805) 687-1825 Home Phone: (805) 682-4618