NABOKV-L post 0023197, Sun, 5 Aug 2012 18:40:59 -0700

Re: [Fwd: Pasternak, which reminds me]
On Aug 5, 2012, at 12:13 PM, Jansy wrote: In my opinion VN was totally
sure of his aesthetic opinions and almost absolutist in his view about
what art really is: he judged writers and poets according to his own
high standards. .Besides, a little envy is not a dangerous thing..

Excuse me, Jansy, but in my experience, a little envy goes a very long
and dangerous way (I have personal experience in this arena, you'll
just have to take my word for that). Envy is a green-eyed monster and
it can and often does lead to morally reprehensible behaviour. Envy
in our great beloved VN shows him to have not just feet of clay, but
very dirty feet indeed.

It would be one thing if it was only against BLP that he held a grudge
- but these igNobel envy grudges are extended to such august
personalities as Albert Schweitzer, a great musician, musicologist and
near saint - but he won the blessed Prize, so off with his head! Th
Mann was no saint, but he was no slouch either in the literary dept.,
but who cares? Got the Prize? off with his head.

You know it hurts me to say so, but it would not be a problem if so
many of VN's admirers didn't follow his lead and feel justified in
joining the master of envy up on his pedestal and feel righteously
justified in looking down on the same people St Vladimir disdained. I
am really tired of it - it brings shame on too many.

For an enlightening discussion of this darker side of our master,
please see V. Volkov's book, The Magical Chorus.

p.s. Some of you may recall that on one of VN's posthumous birthdays I
asked if anyone on the list could come up with a single act of loving
kindness performed during his lifetime by VN and the best someone
could come up with was that he once fed a neighbor's cat. It is
pathetic and if I thought about it I could probably come up with an
even better word than that. How about 'disgusting'?

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