NABOKV-L post 0004555, Wed, 10 Nov 1999 11:58:36 -0800

VN conference in Freiburg (Nov. 1999)
EDITOR's NOTE. Galya Diment <> is Vice-President of
the International VN Society and Co-editor of NABOKV-L. She and Zoran
Kuzmanovich, editor of NABOKOV STUDIES, represented the Society at the
Freiburg conference.
From: Galya Diment <>

Freiburg's Centennial Conference: Vladimir Nabokov at 100. November 4-5,
1999. A Participant's Report.

The conference -- as far as I know, the only one to take place in Germany
this year -- was held in the beautiful city of Freiburg, very close to
Switzerland, where Nabokov spent the last portion of his life. Paul
Neubauer, who teaches at the University of Freiburg and organized the
conference, as well as the German Association of American Studies, which
sponsored it, are to be commended for a very successful event (if I may
say so myself :). In addition to Zoran Kuzmanovich and myself (we opened
and closed the program), 9 other Nabokov enthusiasts (and some of them
Nabokv-L subscribers and contributors) participated in two workshops --
"Reading Nabokov - The Works" and "Re-Reading Nabokov: Intertexts." The
Nabokovians in Freiburg included Paul D. Morris (Saarland University), who
treated Nabokov's poetry as a "blueprint" for the themes VN was to develop
in his prose works; Oliver Kudler, an MA student at the University of
Freiburg who is working with Paul Neubauer and with _Pnin_; Barbara Huppe,
who lives in Berlin and is finishing her dissertation on _Pale Fire_;
Herbert Grabes (University of Giessen), whom we all know as the author of
the excellent 1975 monograph on Nabokov _Erfundene Biographien: Vladimir
Nabokovs Englische Romane_ (Fictitious Biographies: Vladimir Nabokov's
English Novels, Mouton, 1977); Carl Springer (University of Hamburg), who
called upon us to re-assess our sometimes low opinion of _Look at the
Harlequins_; Nassim Balestrini, from the University of Mainz, who just
came from the event in Russia on Nabokov and Germany (and posted her
report on that event on Nabokv-L a couple of days prior to the Freiburg
conference) and who presented us with a comparative analysis of VN's
"Music" and Tolstoy's "The Kreutzer Sonata"; Bernd Klahn (University of
Bochum), who continued the debate on whether Nabokov was a Modernist or
Post-Modernist; and two graduate students from the University of Giessen,
Roy Sommer and Bruno Zerweck, who talked about the film versions of

In addition to the intellectual discussions and exchanges, many tasty (and
highly fattening) sausages were digested and lots beer and wine consumed.
It was a great conference, wonderful company, and beautiful locale. No
complaints here -- and special thanks, again, to Paul (who is also one of
our MLA panelists this year) for making it all possible.

The proceedings of the conference will be published next year.

Galya Diment