Vladimir Nabokov: Selected Poems

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Overview

Though we know Vladimir Nabokov as a brilliant novelist, his first love was poetry. This landmark collection brings together the best of his verse, including many pieces that have never before appeared in English.

These poems span the whole of Nabokov’s career, from the newly discovered “Music,” written in 1914, to the short, playful “To Véra,” composed in 1974. Many are newly translated by Dmitri Nabokov, including The University Poem, a sparkling novella in verse (modeled on ...

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Vladimir Nabokov: Selected Letters 1940-1977

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Overview

Though we know Vladimir Nabokov as a brilliant novelist, his first love was poetry. This landmark collection brings together the best of his verse, including many pieces that have never before appeared in English.

These poems span the whole of Nabokov’s career, from the newly discovered “Music,” written in 1914, to the short, playful “To Véra,” composed in 1974. Many are newly translated by Dmitri Nabokov, including The University Poem, a sparkling novella in verse (modeled on Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin) that constitutes a significant new addition to Nabokov’s oeuvre. Included too are such poems as “Lilith,” an early work which broaches the taboo theme revisited nearly forty years later in Lolita, and “An Evening of Russian Poetry,” a masterpiece in which Nabokov movingly mourns his lost language in the guise of a versified lecture on Russian delivered to college girls. The subjects range from the Russian Revolution to the American refrigerator, taking in on the way motel rooms, butterflies, ice-skating, love, desire, exile, loneliness, language, and poetry itself; and the poet whirls swiftly between the brilliantly painted facets of his genius, wearing masks that are by turns tender, demonic, sincere, self-parodying, shamanic, visionary, and ingeniously domestic.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781480543188
  • Publisher: Brilliance Audio
  • Publication date: 12/1/2013
  • Format: MP3 on CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 7.40 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Vladimir Nabokov studied French and Russian literature at Trinity College, Cambridge, then lived in Berlin and Paris, writing prolifically in Russian under the pseudonym Sirin. In 1940, he left France for the United States, where he wrote some of his greatest worksb — Bend Sinister (1947), Lolita (1955), Pnin (1957), and Pale Fire (1962) — and translated his earlier Russian novels into English. He taught at Wellesley, Harvard, and Cornell. He died in Montreux, Switzerland, in 1977.

Biography

Vladimir Vladimirovich Nabokov was born on April 23, 1899, in St. Petersburg, Russia. The Nabokovs were known for their high culture and commitment to public service, and the elder Nabokov was an outspoken opponent of antisemitism and one of the leaders of the opposition party, the Kadets. In 1919, following the Bolshevik revolution, he took his family into exile. Four years later he was shot and killed at a political rally in Berlin while trying to shield the speaker from right-wing assassins.

The Nabokov household was trilingual, and as a child Nabokov was already reading Wells, Poe, Browning, Keats, Flaubert, Verlaine, Rimbaud, Tolstoy, and Chekhov, alongside the popular entertainments of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Jules Verne. As a young man, he studied Slavic and romance languages at Trinity College, Cambridge, taking his honors degree in 1922. For the next eighteen years he lived in Berlin and Paris, writing prolifically in Russian under the pseudonym Sirin and supporting himself through translations, lessons in English and tennis, and by composing the first crossword puzzles in Russian. In 1925 he married Vera Slonim, with whom he had one child, a son, Dmitri.

Having already fled Russia and Germany, Nabokov became a refugee once more in 1940, when he was forced to leave France for the United States. There he taught at Wellesley, Harvard, and Cornell. He also gave up writing in Russian and began composing fiction in English. In his afterword to Lolita he claimed: "My private tragedy, which cannot, and indeed should not, be anybody's concern, is that I had to abandon my natural idiom, my untrammeled, rich, and infinitely docile Russian tongue for a second-rate brand of English, devoid of any of those apparatuses -- the baffling mirror, the black velvet backdrop, the implied associations and traditions -- which the native illusionist, frac-tails flying, can magically use to transcend the heritage in his own way." [p. 317] Yet Nabokov's American period saw the creation of what are arguably his greatest works, Bend Sinister (1947), Lolita (1955), Pnin (1957), and Pale Fire (1962), as well as the translation of his earlier Russian novels into English. He also undertook English translations of works by Lermontov and Pushkin and wrote several books of criticism. Vladimir Nabokov died in Montreux, Switzerland, in 1977.

Author biography courtesy of Random House, Inc.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Vladimir Sirin
    1. Date of Birth:
      April 23, 1899
    2. Place of Birth:
      St. Petersburg, Russia
    1. Date of Death:
      July 2, 1977
    2. Place of Death:
      Montreux, Switzerland

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2013

    Colt

    I know....goodnight.

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    Posted December 7, 2013

    Amanda

    Good night. Love you.

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