Tag Archives: The Original of Laura

Nabakov’s New Novel: The Original of Laura

JILLIAN LOVEJOY LOWERY: It’s easy to see why it was tempting to (very, very posthumously) publish Vladimir Nabokov’s final work-in-progress, The Original of Laura. Nabokov’s a literary icon, one of the greats of the 20th century. But when is it right to go against a man’s dying wish? And what if the end result turns out to be disappointing and brings with it a significant amount of backlash?

AKIE BERMISS: I was never a huge Nabokov fan for reasons too many and varied to go into. My first tastes of Nabokov were heavy doses of his work paired with virulent myopia and over-bearing personalities. I’ve admired him, if at all (and sometimes begrudgingly) only from afar. As a spectator of those who adore him senselessly. And I have no desire to impugn the author or his body of work with something like ignorant cynicism (though that is often the accusation) — but maybe in another life, I may come to love the words of Vladimir Nabokov. Continue reading

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Unfinished Works: The Complete Discussion

JEFF ELDRIDGE: Whether it’s the new John Cheever biography or David Foster Wallace’s unfinished novel, posthumous publications aren’t exploitations — they’re necessary.

TED BERG: None of us should be making publication choices for David Foster Wallace.

MOLLY SCHOEMANN: A healthy respect for individual privacy is one thing that has not flourished over the years, in art as well as life.

DAVE TOMAR: So long as we are prepared as fans to condone the self-serving rape of an artist’s hidden legacy, we must also be prepared for the point at which this props up the artist as an image, an icon and a commodity falsely separated from his work. Continue reading

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