NABOKV-L post 0025506, Wed, 2 Jul 2014 16:44:03 -0300

Kafkaian undertones and efficiency: a correction
L.Hochard: “Relying on what J Aisenberg says about Maxim Shrayer's The World
of Nabokov's stories (that I have not read yet but will), the story 's
protagonist comes from the Otherworld. That's how I see it too, the
character is some kind of otherwordly ghost - a lesser being certainly,
since he is the "employee" of one of those beings, "aloof and mute", who are
"Playing a game of worlds " "from their involute /Abode ".

What Vasiliy Ivanovitch has experienced and wants to resign is mortality. [

Jansy Mello: Shrayer’s indicators suggest that Vassiliy might be “some kind
of otherworldly ghost…the ‘employee’ of” ‘aloof and mute’ beings” (an
opinion endorsed by L.Hochard and J.Aisenberg, or so it seems to me),
whereas I’d envisaged him as being simply a flesh and blood “representative”
of an author’s mind. I find this idea, of Vasiliy some kind of incarnated
angel, very appealing. It also opens new vistas for the interpretation of
CCL. Reading Shrayer’s book is a “must” if we intend to pursue this vertex!

I found an adequate VN quote to bring up here in relation to one of
L.Hochard’s remarks*- and CCL: “ Time, though akin to rhythm, is not simply
rhythm, which would imply motion – and Time does not move. Van’s greatest
discovery is his perception of Time as the dim hollow between two rhythmic
beats, the narrow and bottomless silence between the beats, not the beats
themselves, which only embar Time. In this sense human life is not a
pulsating heart but the missed heartbeat.” (SO,186 - 1971).

V.Nabokov’s last sentence, in the paragraph above, is intriguing (…human
life as a missed heartbeat!), particularly when we remember CCL, not ADA…


*- “As for the wonderful landscape (with me it works entirely!), its first
characteristic, in stark contrast to the inescapable forward movement in the
rest of the story is its immobility (= timelessness). Vassili has already
glimpsed at such islands of immobility on the first day of the trip: §8 "...
there would appear and, as it were, stop for an instant, like air retained
in the lung, a spot so enchanting - a lawn, a terrace - such perfect
expression of tender well-meaning beauty - that it seemed that if one could
stop the train ..."

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