"The literary biographer is haunted by Nabokov’s stylishly defensive
comment that the only biography of a writer that matters is the biography of his
"Stylishly defensive Nabokov", if I
remember it correctly, has praised Raymond Queneau ( who wrote
"Exercises in Style", where we find the same very trivial story
being told ninety-nine times in 99 different styles)
and mentioned Buffon's epigram,“Le style est l’homme même”
(“Style is the man himself”).
In V's biography of Sebastian Knight we learn
that certain lives are..." but commentaries to the main
subject". What I'm learning through
TRLSK, though, is that the "dead man of the tale"
always remains inaccessible and most often what we read about him is
mainly a reflection of his biographer's own style (or the lack of it,
as is the case of V.).