Boyd on Nabokov the Psychologist

From the 2011 Autumn issue of the American Scholar -- Boyd on Nabokov as a psychologist:
Vladimir Nabokov once dismissed as “preposterous” the French writer Alain Robbe-Grillet’s assertions that his novels eliminated psychology: “The shifts of levels, the interpenetration of successive impressions and so forth belong of course to psychology,” Nabokov said, “—psychology at its best.” Later asked, “Are you a psychological novelist?” Nabokov replied: “All novelists of any worth are psychological novelists.” 
(The rest here.)

Bridges to Antiterra

Anyone interested in Ada is urged to visit Ada Online: it includes the text of the novel and professor Boyd's annotations. The site is accurate, beautifully organized, rich with insight and information, and is in every regard everything this particular page is not--which is to say that Ada Online is not


A monstrous, incomplete, and (most likely) inaccurate log of the literature found in Nabokov’s glorious Ada. For the serious footwork you have Professor Brian Boyd to thank -- I’ve used his endnotes from the Library of America edition of Ada (as well as Nabokov’s Vivian Darkbloom’s Notes to Ada). All mistakes are, of course, mine. Corrections and comments and clues are welcome.


I eventually hope to have hypertext links to all the works and authors on the table. ADA doesn't need this kind of context, by the way, but it comes in handy for a second or third reading. Page numbers refer to the Library of America edition. Asterisks point to double or triple puns or jokes made by Nabokov. I'll select a brief quote from the novel to illustrate the reference, but that won't happen for a while. Also, I've excluded multiple allusions to a poem or novel, limiting myself to one for illustration purposes (for more, look to Brian Boyd's notes for the Library of America edition or buy his excellent Nabokov's Ada: The Place of Consciousness).

Allusions to paintings, magazine articles, and songs are not listed.

Bracketed titles are either not yet in the Public Domain or they could not be found on-line, but they can be purchased from Amazon.Com.

Boyd on Nabokov's Blues Discovery and the New York Times Article

My favorite commentary so far on the now much-e-mailed-around, much-commented-upon NY Times Nabokov Theory on Butterfly Evolution is Vindicated comes from the formidable Brian Boyd -- Nabokov biographer, editor of Nabokov's Butterflies, and most recently writer of the awesome On The Origin of Stories:
All the more kudos to Nabokov, then, for having developed a hypothesis over sixty years ago, in such a complex group, that proved fertile in driving a ground-breaking research project that uses methods (DNA sampling, computer-assisted cladistics) neither he nor anyone else could have imagined in 1945.