Vladimir Nabokov: Bend Sinister

(1998 words)
  • William Norman (University of Kent at Canterbury)

Bend Sinister was the first novel Nabokov wrote after his flight from Europe to the USA in 1941. During his first six years in America he taught Russian literature in several universities, researched butterflies at Harvard, composed the critical biography Nikolai Gogol (1944), wrote reviews for New Republic and The New York Times, and worked on his novel. Its publication in 1947, five years after he optimistically told his editor “it will be ready for you in three or four months”, was a greeted with relief by its exhausted author.

Bend Sinister reflects its troubled gestation. On the one hand it is a dystopian novel bearing comparison with Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four (…

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Norman, William. "Bend Sinister". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 07 June 2006
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=6378, accessed 25 September 2016.]

Related Groups

  1. Dystopian and Apocalyptic Fiction