Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0001418, Sat, 9 Nov 1996 11:29:25 -0800

I have mentioned Rowohlt's German edition of Nabokov collected works
several times stressing that its many editorial features make it an
invaluable research aid---whether or not you have any German to speak of.
The edition, now nearly complete in about 25 volumes, is edited by the
leading German Nabokovian, Dieter E. Zimmer, who is responsible, inter
alia, for the set's remarkable editorial apparatus.

A particular case in point is volume 22, _Erinnerung, sprich_ (_Speak,
Memory_) which has several appendices that can save the researcher a great
deal of work. The writing and publication history of SPEAK, MEMORY is
quite complex and the careful scholar will have frequent occasion to
compare the different French, English, and Russian versions some of which
differ substantially. Additionally, Nabokov made various comments about
the book in his correspondence. Much research can be greatly simplified by
consulting Zimmer's version which contains the following materials:

Editor's Postscript(pp.434-442): Textual history, including references to
autobiographic fragments incorporated in the fiction. List of real
names of pseudonyms used by VN for characters in SM.

Appendix I (pp.443-446): Quotes about SM from VN's Letters.
Appendix II (447-491): A list of textual differences from the first English
edition found in the 1954 Russian version. (Extremely useful!)
Appendix III (pp. 492-503:) "Mademoiselle O". Text passages in the
original French version omitted in the later English versions. Also
includes the entire original French version (in French).
Appendix IV (pp. 532-551): Photographs. In addition to the photographs
appearing in the 1966 SPEAK, MEMORY, editor Zimmer has added
16 photos (mostly taken by himself) of Nabokov locations in
Petersburg and, especially, Vyra. Each is accompanied by the
relevant SM text passage.

Nabokov's "Index" has been slightly augmented.

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