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Stalking Nabokov$
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Brian Boyd

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231158572

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231158572.001.0001

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Nabokov and Machado de Assis

Nabokov and Machado de Assis

(p.248) 18. Nabokov and Machado de Assis
Stalking Nabokov

Brain Boyd

Columbia University Press

This chapter compares Vladimir Nabokov with Brazilian novelist Joaquím Maria Machado de Assis and examines how the similarities and differences between them throw light on the resources of fiction and the range of literary vision. The two authors could almost have thought up some of each other's works. Nabokov played again and again with the central paradox of Machado's novel, The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas. Machado and Nabokov seem particularly close in their quick comic asides to readers. Both wring comedy, drama, and psychological revelation from the narrator's processes of composition and publication; often explore the self-love entangled with the love of another; are obsessed about time as loss; and resist the determinism of literary naturalism.

Keywords:   fiction, Vladimir Nabokov, Joaquím Maria Machado de Assis, novel, The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas, comedy, drama, love, time, literary naturalism

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