Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0025067, Sun, 9 Feb 2014 22:08:53 -0500

Re: [Old SIGHTING] Nabokov's Berlin: Nabokov, art and evil
I was referring to Humbert's explicit contemplation of a turn to religion
as described by "him" in the novel. But of course he found this
unsatisfactory, as he explains.

Anthony Stadlen
2A Alexandra Avenue
GB - London N22 7XE
Tel.: +44 (0) 20 8888 6857
For Existential Psychotherapy and Inner Circle Seminars see:
_http://anthonystadlen.blogspot.com_ (http://anthonystadlen.blogspot.com/)

In a message dated 10/02/2014 00:26:22 GMT Standard Time, nabokv-l@UTK.EDU

RE [NABOKV-L] [Old SIGHTING] Nabokov's Berlin Nabokov, art and evil
RE: [NABOKV-L] [Old SIGHTING] Nabokov's Berlin: Nabokov, art and evil
laurence hochard _<laurence.hochard@hotmail.fr>_
2/9/2014 9:22 AM
Vladimir Nabokov Forum _<nabokv-l@listserv.ucsb.edu>_
Anthony Stadlen: "and also posturing penitent contemplating a turn to
religion "

I don't think that Humbert's statement ("Unless it can be proven to me —
to me as I am now, today, with my heart and by beard, and my putrefaction —
that in the infinite run it does not matter a jot that a North American
girl-child named Dolores Haze had been deprived of her childhood by a maniac,
unless this can be proven (and if it can, then life is a joke), I see
nothing for the treatment of my misery but the melancholy and very local
palliative of articulate art.") can be read as a turn to religion. Quite the
contrary! This is one of Humbert's rare moments of lucidity when Humbert's and
the author's voices fuse. In essence, what they say here is that there is no
redemption whatsover for Humbert's crime, that no religious idea of
atonement can never undo what has been done.
I suspect that this passage is a dig at Ivan's confession in Dostoëvski's
The Brothers Karamazov. Indeed, Ivan confesses to having abused a little
girl who afterwards commits suicide. If I remember well, this written
confession is addressed to staretz Zosima who recommends total obedience and
surrender to God as atonement for Ivan's sin. This is what Nabokov totally

Laurence Hochard
_Google Search _
_the archive_
) _Contact_ (mailto:nabokv-l@utk.edu,nabokv-l@holycross.edu)
_the Editors_ (mailto:nabokv-l@utk.edu,nabokv-l@holycross.edu) _NOJ_
(http://www.nabokovonline.com/) _Zembla_
(http://www.libraries.psu.edu/nabokov/zembla.htm) _Nabokv-L _ (http://web.utk.edu/~sblackwe/EDNote.htm)
_Policies_ (http://web.utk.edu/~sblackwe/EDNote.htm) _Subscription
options_ (http://listserv.ucsb.edu/) _AdaOnline_ (http://www.ada.auckland.ac.nz/)
_NSJ Ada Annotations_ (http://vnjapan.org/main/ada/index.html) _L-Soft
Search the archive_ (https://listserv.ucsb.edu/lsv-cgi-bin/wa?A0=NABOKV-L)
_VN Bibliography Blog_ (http://vnbiblio.com/)

All private editorial communications are read by both co-editors.

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
Visit "Nabokov Online Journal:" http://www.nabokovonline.com

Manage subscription options: http://listserv.ucsb.edu/