NABOKV-L post 0001455, Mon, 18 Nov 1996 10:50:31 -0800

Re: intro to VN for teenagers (fwd)
EDITOR'S NOTE. NABOKV-L thanks the many people who responded to the above
thread. After reading all the suggestions, my own candidates are, more or
less in order --"Signs and Symbols," and then "Lance." _Speak, Memory_,
_Lolita_. I am beginning to be reminded of a radio program I heard in
Moscow some thirty years ago: "How to Tell your Child about Lenin."

There have been almost as many corrections to the misquotation of the
Sting and the Police song title "Don't Stand so Close to Me" as to the
thread itself. Although Ben Walsh, below, has doubts about the virtues of
enticing the young to Nabokov via Sting, I recall having students tell me
that they enrolled in my Nabokov class because of it. Sting, I am
informed, is in real life, one Gordon Sumner, former teacher at a Brit.
girls' school. And yes, I confess, I own the LP.
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ben Walsh <>

I can hardly think of a more effective way of alienating a teenager from
Nabokov completely than by mentioning any reference to Sting.

Besides, VN has a habit of appealing to people who are not so easily swayed
by fashion and accepted norms - this is going to be particularly true of


At 21:03 17/11/96 -0800, you wrote:
>From: AMH <>
>Don't forget, if you choose to introduce VN to a teenager by recommending
>they read Lolita, you can add, as a pinch of glitter, that this is the
>book and author that is alluded to in that rock song classic by The
>Police, "Don't Stand By Me".
"My god died young. Theolatry I found
demeaning, and its premises unsound"
- Vladimir Nabokov, "Pale Fire"