Day: August 1, 2011

“Good Readers and Good Writers” (from Lectures on Literature) Vladimir Nabokov

“Good Readers and Good Writers” (from Lectures on Literature) Vladimir Nabokov (originally delivered in 1948)   My course, among other things, is a kind of detective investigation of the mystery of literary structures. “How to be a Good Reader” or “Kindness to Authors”—something of that sort might serve to provide a subtitle for these various discussions of various authors, for my plan is to deal lovingly, in loving and lingering detail, with several European Masterpieces. A hundred years ago, Flaubert in a letter to his mistress made the following remark: Commel’on serait savant si l’on connaissait bien seulement cinq a six livres: “What a scholar one might be if one knew well only some half a dozen books.” In reading, one should notice and fondle details. There is nothing wrong about the moonshine of generalization when it comes after the sunny trifles of the book have been lovingly collected. If one begins with a readymade generalization, one begins at the wrong end and travels away from the book before one has started to understand it. Nothing is more boring or more unfair to the author than starting to read, say, Madame Bovary, with the preconceived notion that it is a denunciation of the bourgeoisie. We should always remember that the work of art is invariably the creation of a new world, so that the first thing we should do...

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THE SEA OF LOST TIME by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Gregory Rabassa, (trans.)

The original story was published in” The New Yorker” back in 1972. Here is a link to the abstract. There is a way to views this file in your classroom, but you need to become a member/subscriber of “The New Yorker.”  If you follow the instructions on the link you should be fine. Here is the Abstract from The New Yorker ABSTRACT: In a small Spanish sea-coast town in South America, every year toward the end of January the sea grew harsh and emitted a foul odor, also dumping its garbage on the town. This contaminated the town with an unbearable mood until the next December. But, one year a man of strange origin, a “gringo” came to town and with his presence the sea became smooth, an emitted an odor of roses. Tobias was one of the first to smell the sweet odor. Later Jacob’s wife, Petra smelled it and attributed it to a message from God that she was soon to die. She requests that she be buried alive because it is the custom of the townspeople to throw their dead into the sea, and she wants to make sure that she is buried in the earth. Mr. Herbert’s presence with two barrelfuls of money and the odor of roses from the sea caused the townspeople and people from nearby towns to rejoice in a festival. Mr....

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The Short Stories of Eva Luna (Isabel Allende) (selections)

This was a tough one… I found a few pdf files in Portugese,but none were in English… This is a Google Translation from Portugese.  This is not an entire selection, but pieces of her work.. From: Portuguese To: English Portuguese to English translation Isabel Allende Eva Luna He then said to Scheherazade: “Sister, may Allah protect you, tells a story that makes us spend the night …” (From The Thousand and One Nights) Chapter 1 My name is Eva, which means life, according to a book that my mother consulted to choose my name. I was born in the back room of a house grew dark and of antique furniture, books in Latin and human mummies, but it failed to make me melancholy, because I came into the world with a breath of the jungle in memory. My father, an Indian with yellow eyes, coming from the place to gather one hundred rivers, woods and smelled the sky never looked forward, because it had been created under the canopy of trees and the light seemed to him indecent. Consuelo, my mother spent her childhood in an enchanted region, where for centuries, adventurers have sought the city of pure gold the conquistadors saw when they spied the depths of his own ambition. Was marked by the landscape and, in a sense, instilled in me that brand. The missionaries gathered Consuelo when he did not...

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