Nabokov's Cityscape and the Berlin Text of German Literature and Art

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Abstract


Despite Nabokov's vehement denial of any possible influence of contemporary German literature, art and cinema on his artistic work, actually he paid close attention to the new trends in German artistic life. This paper examines Nabokov's cityscapes in various short stories and novels in the context of the «Berlin Text» of the 1920-30 German literature and cinema. We argue that the snapshot of Berlin and the portraits of the three main characters in the novel «King, Queen, Knave» are the parody of the expressionistic tendencies in the urban discourse of the German literature. We've also exposed the possible influence of the avant-garde documentary film «Berlin, die Symphonie der Grosstadt» on some visual images of the city as well as the presentation of the mechanic dummy motif in Nabokov's second novel.

Oksana Willis

The University of Tampa

The University of Tampa

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Copyright (c) 2008 Уиллис О.

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