Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Nabokov in America

Excerpt from "Nabokov in America: On the Road to Lalita" by Robert Roper via

To be in America that summer was most excellent luck. The Nabokovs had been through the historical wringer; they were Zelig-like figures of 20th-century catastrophe, dispossessed of their native Russia by the Bolsheviks, hair’s-breadth escapees of the Nazis, “little” people with murderous evil breathing down their necks. Had they been in Russia, they might have been starving to death or dying of cholera during the Siege of Leningrad, the most calamitous siege in world history; had they remained in France, Véra Nabokov, who was Jewish, and her young son, Dmitri, would likely have been on their way to Drancy, the French internment camp that directly fed Auschwitz-Birkenau.

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