Vladimir Nabokov

Call for Participants (NOSE)

By dana_dragunoiu, 21 February, 2023

Call for Participants

Those interested in presenting on the following topics should contact Matthew Roth at mroth@messiah.edu. Please include a brief statement outlining your proposed approach to the topic you have chosen. Deadline: 26 March 2023


  1. Nabokov and the Other: We invite presentations on the ‘Other’ in Nabokov’s works, exploring identities of secondary characters in the context of race, ethnicity, disability, gender, and/or sexual identity, discussing how they are used or appropriated in the text, and their dynamic with the authorial self or protagonist. 2 or 3 presenters (Proposal by Anoushka Alexander-Rose)
  2. Ludic Allusions: Nabokov and the Art of Gamesmanship: While Nabokov’s use of chess has been widely acknowledged and studied, other forms of games have garnered less attention. We invite presentations that consider instances of these allusions in particular novels or stories; proposed solutions to games; roles of characters in the game; the figurative meaning of games; the author/reader as ludic opponents; the relationship between problems and solutions, etc. 2 or 3 presenters (Proposal by Mary Ross)
  3. Characters on the Edge: Nabokov’s characters often inhabit a borderland between two states of consciousness. In stories and novels like “Details of a Sunset,” “Perfection,” “Terra Incognita,” The Eye, Pale Fire, and many others, Nabokov places his characters on a knife’s edge between life and death, sanity and madness, identity and dissolution, subject and object. We invite presentations focusing on these liminal spaces and the characters who inhabit them. Presentations may focus on a particular work, patterns that appear across multiple works, authorial strategies, readerly quandaries, etc. 2 or 3 presenters (Proposal by Matthew Roth)
  4. Nabokov in the Archives: As access has opened up to Nabokov scholars over the past two decades, we have seen a burgeoning interest in archival materials. We invite presentations that explore the problems and opportunities that arise when working with unpublished works, drafts, notes, diaries, letters, fragments, and other items. Presentations may address the various purposes of archival research, highlight particular discoveries, or speak to unique challenges that confront the Nabokovian who enters into this field of study. 2 or 3 presenters (Proposal by Olga Voronina)
  5. Short Story Roundtable:  Three presenters, one story. All approaches welcome (15 minutes each with time for responses). First proposed story: “La Veneziana”