NABOKV-L post 0007000, Fri, 1 Nov 2002 17:58:06 -0800

Fw: Pale Fire: Response to Ms. Kunin
----- Original Message -----
From: "Thomas Nguyen" <thomasnguyen25@HOTMAIL.COM>
Cc: "Thomas Nguyen" <thomasnguyen25@HOTMAIL.COM>
> ----------------- Message requiring your approval (48
lines) ------------------
> Dear Ms. Kunin,
> [Note to readers: the following response is composed in an entirely sober,
> ironical, non-belligerent tone]
> I did not intend with my last response to offend you, nor to express any
kind of
> "anger", nor to put forth any kind of final solution. Yes, you correctly
point out that my
> paper is some way, playing the game, if by playing the game you mean
> in the ongoing discussion of the Pale Fire interpretation. I am afraid,
though, that
> you incorrectly accuse me of trying to "be right in the end... then the
prize may go to
> [me], the crown and its jewels". I stated explicitly in my last response
> 1) ... what I have tried to show is a way to read the novel that is not
delimited by the
> necessity of finding an answer.
> 2) I offer a discussion of what I have determined this faint hope to be in
my thesis,
> and, of course, I make no claims for it being the final one. Indeed, I
would certainly
> hope to hear what others have made of this faint hope.
> Of course, one may read behind the veil of these statements and say that
> recommendation to read in a different manner is an answer in itself, and
that my
> invitation for further discussion is just a clever means of covering up
this possible
> fact. My response to this is that looking at a problem in a different
way is not
> equivalent to solving the problem. The novel Pale Fire continues to be a
> challenging read, regardless of what answers or modes of reading we apply
to it.
> I am simply trying to offer to the public a possible alternative way in
which we may
> discuss (not solve) the novel Pale Fire, a novel which has intrigued me
for years and
> compelled me to participate in a discussion which seems to be rather set
in its ways
> of delegating the possible understandings of this novel. No anger
involved, no petty
> competitiveness. I have tried to form my statements as sincerely and non-
> sounding as possible but, of course, a writer can only do so much to
defend the
> candor of his words before the readers are allowed to do what they wish to
> This point is illustrated quite effectively in the subject of this
conversation, the true
> winner of the prize, Pale Fire.
> Cheers,
> Thomas Nguyen
> P.S.
> Again, you may view my paper at the following URL:
> I do admit now that some anger is evident towards the end of my paper, but
I take full
> responsibility for it (and see that it was not at all necessary,
especially in light of the
> preceding conversation) and hope that it does not discolor your reading of
> discussion. I was, after all, just an angry youth trying to make the
world a better,
> more interesting place for other weary English lit majors.