Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0015157, Sun, 22 Apr 2007 03:30:57 +0000

Re: THOUGHTS: Creationism and VN
There is an article by S.V. Savelyev in #11 issue of Russian magazine Science and Life for 2006 describing energetic approach to evolution of brain. Its Russian text can be found at http://elementy.ru/lib/430378?page_design=print. In the end it contains answers of Professor Savelyev on selected questions by the readers. In one question he is asked to comment on possibility that human brain evolved 'from positions of Darvin theory of evolution'. Professor Savelyev (who in Nabokovian twist is a capable artist illustrating his own publications - including that article) constasts Darvin's selection with individual change within given species. According to him evolution of brain is based on the later. Isn't individual change was what VN had in mind when he wrote in Father's Butterfies about the self-transforming sphere of species with its idea in the center. And no, I found no sarcasm in Professor's words. In VN's - may be. I only wish that our own species could follow the Master. But no, that is in vain.

Since nobody pointed that out, in Father's Butterfies VN compared development in nature of concept of species with multiplication of concepts accompanying brain complexity. IOW he approached evolution from position of complexity of brain - not the other way around. There is a hint of creationism in that. Here is the quote:

"Just as an increase in the brain's complexity is accompanied by a multiplication of concepts, so the history of nature demonstrates a gradual development in nature herself of the basic concept of species and genus as they take form."

'Gradual' is interesting word in VN's works (including The Gift and Pale Fire).

- George

>>Do you presume VN was sarcastic when
>> he
>> wrote about “the brain, an even more monstrous achievement”?

>Yes, I do.

Search the archive: http://listserv.ucsb.edu/archives/nabokv-l.html
Search archive with Google:

Contact the Editors: mailto:nabokv-l@utk.edu,nabokv-l@holycross.edu
Visit Zembla: http://www.libraries.psu.edu/nabokov/zembla.htm
View Nabokv-L policies: http://web.utk.edu/~sblackwe/EDNote.htm