Vladimir Nabokov and Clothing in Pnin

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by jonnyunpleasant, Apr 8, 2007.

  1. jonnyunpleasant

    jonnyunpleasant Member

    Messages:
    23
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2006
    In my Russian Lit class, I recently had to write a paper about the Vladimir Nabokov novel Pnin.

    Rather than drone on about Nabokov's sexual orientation or character relationships or some dumb crap like that, I decided to discuss the use of clothing (mostly men's) in developing character personalities.

    Obviously it will make more sense to someone who has actually read the book, but I think it may prove interesting to those who haven't.

    Because much of the information in the paper was taken from scouring these forums, I was hoping that some in-the-know people could make sure everything is correct. Any criticism of the writing style or anything else would also be appreciated.

    Enjoy

    [Several of the less sartorially relevant paragraphs were removed]

     
  2. dare-

    dare- Senior member

    Messages:
    115
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
  3. rach2jlc

    rach2jlc Prof. Fabulous Dubiously Honored

    Messages:
    14,790
    Likes Received:
    794
    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2006
    Location:
    Monaco
    D+

    Wow, that's so helpful and will be really beneficial to this poster. Thanks, Professor; you get an "A" for effort.

    It's so easy to hide behind an anonymous sign-on name and post shitty little comments like this; try posting some of your own work in a general forum and see how it goes. Quite frankly, whether or not you think this is "A" work is irrelevant; I applaud the OP for having the confidence to post his work and ask for opinions.

    Unfortunately, Pnin isn't a Nabokov I've read, so I can't really comment there (Lolita and Pale Fire were enough for me). In my classes, I always teach that the toughest thing about a paper like this is finding the right way to get into the topic in a way that goes beyond just plot summary. Connecting the book to something in which you are already interested (like clothing or sports or art or anything else), in my opinion, always leads to a better and more insightful paper. And, your teachers appreciate it as well; when grading a stack of papers that mostly all say the same five things, it's refreshing to have a different "angle."
     
  4. mr bunbury

    mr bunbury Senior member

    Messages:
    718
    Likes Received:
    1
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2006
    You have a few typos in there (you might want to reread carefully) and you don't need to argue for N's conscious decisions; also "does not only affect" should be "affects not only."

    That said, as a guy who teaches Pnin to college students, I thought this was great! It doesn't get into the deeper subjects in Pnin, but, for my part, it's helped me visualized the characters and opened up a whole little world of its own in the book. The rakishly opened three-piece suit = hilarious.
     
  5. Nantucket Red

    Nantucket Red "Mr. Fashionista"

    Messages:
    5,742
    Likes Received:
    15
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    Location:
    Upper East Coast
    It's been nearly 15 years since I read Pnin. I recall Pnin as being a rather eccentric and socially inept character trying to find a way to fit into a culture that baffles him. It's been too long for me to remember anything about the clothes, but the essay made an interesting read nonetheless.
     

Share This Page

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by