Vladimir Nabokov

Cultureteca 10.01.16

Sweden Imposes ID Checks Over ‘The Bridge’ On Monday Sweden implemented mandatory identity checks for travellers arriving by train, bus, or ferry from Denmark, in an attempt to reduce the number of migrants arriving in the country. All passengers are now obliged to show a passport, driving license, or Swedish national identity card in order to make the journey, with the impact centred on…

Great Long Opening Sentences in World Literature

Some of the greatest first lines in world literature are but a few words long, consisting of a lone and simple clause: ‘Call me Ishmael.’ from Herman Melville’s Moby Dick (1851), and for a more recent example, ‘See the child.’ from Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian (1985). Others too suggestively introduce a central figure, whether the narrator or the object of the narrator’s gaze:…

Crimea in the Russian Empire: A Cultural History

Kievan Rus flourished from about 882 – when Prince Oleg moved the capital of the Rus from Novgorod to Kiev – until the 13th century, when the Mongol Empire invaded and destroyed their major cities. While Russia gradually threw off the ‘Mongol-Tatar Yoke’, and began to emerge round the city of Moscow as a powerful independent state, Kiev and much…

Podcast: ‘Silentium!’ by Fyodor Tyutchev

This is the first in a new series of videos/podcasts drawing upon what I have written and published here at Culturedallroundman.com. The podcast returns to the very first piece I published back on my old WordPress.com site, on Fyodor Tyutchev’s 1830 poem ‘Silentium!’. I expand upon Tyutchev’s life, before reading his poem in Vladimir Nabokov’s translation, published with New Directions…

Joyce, Nabokov, and Dirty Books: The Publications of Ulysses, Haveth Childers Everywhere, and Lolita

With Ezra Pound acting as intermediary, from the spring of 1918 until the close of 1920, James Joyce published the emerging episodes of Ulysses in The Little Review – the American avant-garde literary magazine founded by Margaret Anderson in 1914, and edited by Anderson and Jane Heap. Having made The Little Review his outlet of choice across 1917, becoming its foreign editor,…

Art and Architecture Towards Political Crises: The 1937 Paris International Exposition in Context

The 1937 Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne (‘International Exposition of Art and Technology in Modern Life’) was held in Paris: the French capital’s sixth and latest International Exposition, after fairs held in 1855, 1867, 1878, 1889, and 1900. It took place between 25 May and 25 November, centred upon the Trocadéro, just across the Seine…

Crimea: A Literary Perspective

Crimea: A Literary Perspective

The situation in Crimea continues to develop agallop. Following events in Kiev, unidentified Russian troops have taken control of Crimea’s airports, public buildings, military installations, and ports. Amid claim and counterclaim – the apparent defection of the chief of the Ukrainian Navy, the claimed defection of thousands of Ukrainian armed forces, and allegations that the human rights of UN envoys…