Nabokov's shadow-line

Kira Alexandra ROSE*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

Abstract

Little to no attention has been paid to the unique presence and meaning of shadows in Vladimir Nabokov's fiction. Nabokov's unconventional treatment of shadows stems from how he perceived them as a synesthete not subject to strict sensory divisions. Nabokov's shadows are material phenomena and also illustrate his relationship to memory, language, writing, and readers, who cannot perceive and therefore do not attend to shadow the same way as he does. Shadow stands in for synesthesia's operations across Nabokov's oeuvre. In The Gift, Nabokov's relation to shadow and problems of communicating his perception through the written line are most pronounced. The following reading of shadow in Nabokov for the first time explores this phenomenon in his writing, as well as how the author uses shadow to expand imagery's possibilities and range.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)102-119
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Modern Literature
Volume40
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Vladimir Nabokov
Reader
Language Writing
Fiction
Imagery
Synaesthesia
Gift

Keywords

  • Imagery
  • Perception
  • Shadow
  • Synesthesia
  • Vladimir Nabokov

Cite this

ROSE, Kira Alexandra. / Nabokov's shadow-line. In: Journal of Modern Literature. 2017 ; Vol. 40, No. 3. pp. 102-119.
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Nabokov's shadow-line. / ROSE, Kira Alexandra.

In: Journal of Modern Literature, Vol. 40, No. 3, 2017, p. 102-119.

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)Researchpeer-review

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