Pale Fire Critical Essay

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To extrapolate the stratum-metaphor, Nabokov’s fiction resembles a land amidst a silent earthquake, where the critic must take into account with the unfortunate contingency of carefully shaped tunnels being constantly rearranged by the destabilized (that is, reread) crushes or landslides brought about by previous hypotheses.

For above all, postmodern criticism offers the revelation of the revitalized consciousness focusing on its own reading process.

My hypothesis is that this novel thematizes the act of reading, as well as its constructive nature.

Apart from the analysis of narratology, my investigation will revolve around two fictional characters in the plot: Charles Kinbote, professor of literature and the assumed narrator of the story, and Gradus, the mysterious assassin, whom I consider the most problematic character.

This self-reflexivity does not function as an exterior device in my approach; rather, the process of reading is itself aware of its own constructive nature.

From this perspective, the paradigmatic shift mentioned above will manifest itself in the realization that criticism must confront itself as being formed in the context of discourses, where these contexts are constructed precisely by the discourses themselves.

In my interpretation, the metaleptic shift occurs when Gradus eventually transgresses Kinbote’s narrative to become the assassin of John Shade.

This phenomenon of transcending diegetic levels will be expressed by the metaphor of the mirror, and will serve as an analogy to discuss the possible readings of the novel itself, more specifically regarding postmodernist reading strategies and the concept of the “dominant narrative” offered by Brian Mc Hale.

In my reading, Gradus’s role will represent the various instances of metalepsis applied in the narrative of Pale Fire.

Metalepsis is the rhetorical tool by which, according to Gérard Genette, the narrative can transcend multiple layers of diegetic reality.

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    Essay by Ted Gioia Readers who encountered Pale Fire when it was first published in 1962 no doubt marveled over its unrelenting cleverness. Here was a novel that was as smartly structured as a chess problem, as tightly written as one of those arcane crossword puzzles for professional lexicons. Only a spoilsport—in this instance, Trotskyite.…

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    Pale Fire is a 1962 novel by Vladimir novel is presented as a 999-line poem titled "Pale Fire", written by the fictional poet John Shade, with a foreword, lengthy commentary and index written by Shade's neighbor and academic colleague, Charles Kinbote.…

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    Besides the political context, the literary context of Pale Fire is also well worth mentioning. Pale Fire is considered to be one of the antecedents to Post-modernism. This is mainly because of the focus on narrative structure. There is a willingness to interrogate the narrator and expose the.…

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    Which is to be master' in Pale Fire* by Maurice Couturier. It would be tedious to tabulate all the theories about who invented whom in Pale Fire; I propose simply to summarize the best known and to pinpoint their respective flaws, the question being, as Humpty Dumpty puts it, “Which is to be master?”…

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    Synthesizing Artistic Delight The Lesson of Pale Fire by Brian Walter Note This article is accompanied by "A Guide to Kinbote's Commentary.". Near the beginning of his longest note to the poem “Pale Fire,” commentator Charles Kinbote strikes an analogy that resonates throughout Nabokov’s work, likening Charles the Beloved's predicament to "what a composer of chess problems might term.…

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