Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0002320, Tue, 2 Sep 1997 16:59:01 -0700

Re: Lunatic esthetics (fwd)
To: NABOKV-L@UCSBVM.ucsb.edu
Subject: Re: Lunatic esthetics (fwd)

From: John_Lavagnino@Brown.edu

| From: Ben Friedlander <bef@acsu.buffalo.edu>
| Jay Livingston sent the following extract from a
| review of a new biography of Frederick Exley, asking for comment:
| > Yet Frederick Exley was also one of the most cunning stylists, at once
| > hard-boiled and mandarin, in recent fiction. His trilogy ("A Fan's Notes" was
| > subtitled "A Fictional Memoir") looms behind the current memoir vogue,
| > although Exley's own confessions of impotence and failure flaunted no redemptive or
| > therapeutic aspirations but tilted more toward the fantastic self-displays of
| > the lunatic esthetics of his beloved Vladimir Nabokov.
Perhaps "lunatic esthetics" is just a misprint; if you read "lunatic
esthetes" it makes more sense, as a reference to Humbert Humbert and
Charles Kinbote. And an esthete is in a much better situation to go
in for self-display than esthetics is.

John Lavagnino