Jansy Mello: Continuing with the explorations related to colored light-and-dark or to various degrees of grey, I reached this link: Optical Properties of Light in Nabokov’s Fiction and Literary Vision, David Richardson, posted on June 20,2013 [ http://subtitlesforadaptations.wordpress.com/2013/06/20/the-optical-properties-of-light-in-nabokovs-fiction-and-literary-vision/]
"In Pnin, as in a lot of Nabokov’s work, optical reflection and its distortion are two major recurring patterns that “resurface in nearly every chapter” (Barabtarlo 20). Barabtarlo’s chromatographic studies ...could be expanded to include additional optical properties: transparency, translucency, opacity, reflection, refraction. Similar analyses could be done to include more of Nabokov’s novels and his stories...The purpose of this paper is to show where the optical properties fit into the fiction, to figure out what exactly they are doing so frequently in Nabokov’s work...What do optical references in Nabokov’s novels and stories, which are replete with references to windows, eyes, mirrors and a few miscellaneous glass objects, have to do with his established themes of language, memory, and metaphysics? ...I have divided this paper into parts for the sake of organization, they are outlined as such: 1) windows 2) mirrors 3) symbols 4) “otherworld”) though there is certainly some blending of all of them."[  ]
The reference to "degrees" in "The Enchanter" is associated to superimposed shades of moral evil. I wonder if this "theory" prompted VN to name his bungling assassin "Gradus" or "Jack Degree." The paragraph allotted to this kind of grading is rather brief, although it's undoubtedly connected to VN's insistence on his being - philosophically - "a monist".* Does any Nabler have other hints and bibliographical indications about this subject?
After I remembered another sample of "doubling" and the overlapping circles of good and evil from V.Nabokov's diagrams about Jekyll and Hyde, I discovered another interesting study, by Sandy Drescher in "A Reading of Nabokov's "That in Aleppo Once...". He writes: "Nabokov further emphasizes that Dr. Jekyll's character is complex, human, a compound of good and bad; while Mr. Hyde is a pure distillation, the outwardly projected essence of Jekyll's evil fraction. Nabokov diagrams a third entity, Jekyll's observing consciousness which persists during the Hyde phase (LL 182-184). [  ] Nabokov faults Stevenson's story on two related counts. First, while all of the characters feel uncanny, intense discomfort in Hyde's presence, none (not Jekyll's mirror, not the author) can describe his face. Second, the nature of Jekyll's sinful misdeeds and Hyde's monstrous ones are never disclosed. The nature of evil is left to the reader's probably inadequate imagination (LL 193-4). Nabokov addresses the first count with a reversal. He portrays the 'face of evil' as it sees, not as it is seen. "http://www.libraries.psu.edu/nabokov/dresch3.htm 
* Cf. Nabokov's Wisconsin Interview (1967)
Q:Since this kind of doubling (if you would agree it is one) is  surely
the  kind  you'd  find  more  congenial, say, than the use Mann
makes of the motif in Death in Venice, would you comment
on ifs implications? 
VN: Those murky matters have no importance to me as a  writer.
Philosophically, I am an indivisible monist. Incidentally, your
handwriting is very like mine.
btw: Search machines are miraculous. "Monism" led me to Georg Steiner's review of Stacy Schiff's "Vera (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov) in "The Observer", 1999.
It's a passing reference..."During recent Nabokov centennial celebrations, mandarin passions and academic pedantry, notably north American, ran riot. Acolytes and impassioned scrutineers offered their findings on 'Tropes of Transparency'; 'Nabokov, "snobizm" and the representations of the self'; on 'The Flight of Icarus and Daedalus' in the master's works; on 'Nabokov, Mach and Monism at the Turn of the Century'; on the possible relations of Lolita or Pale Fire or Glory to Tolstoy, Pushkin, Yeats, Proust or T.S. Eliot. Parallels were adduced between the philosophies of memory in Bergson and Nabokov's successive memoirs. A 2,000-page commentary on Ada, an often prurient and arguably botched torso, is in progress. Armadas of monographs and doctoral dissertations are hoisting sail. / The reason for this plethora lies not only with the manifest fascination exercised by Vladimir Nabokov's brilliantly assembled persona and the diversity, volume and singular genius of much of his writings. It reflects the almost uncanny concordance between these writings and the very nature of the academic enterprise.. "
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