By Barbara Straumann
This comparative examine of Alfred Hitchcock and Vladimir Nabokov opens up their paintings to problems with exile and migration. questions on the contingencies of heritage and the rupture of the true are infrequently dropped at undergo on those self-reflexive texts. Barbara Straumann responds to this serious hole by means of studying real-life exile because the "absent cause" of Hitchcock and Nabokov's wonderful virtuosity. Her "cross-mapping" of the 2 doubtless disparate authors takes as its element of departure the stipulations of exile during which they discovered themselves and exhibits how the relentless playfulness in their language and irony creates a brand new domestic on the earth of signs.
Straumann heavily reads Speak, Memory, Lolita, The actual lifetime of Sebastian Knight, Suspicion, North by means of Northwest, and Shadow of a Doubt, exploring the connections among language, mind's eye, and exile. The ebook will attract these attracted to Nabokov, Hitchcock, Freud, Lacan, cultural idea, media, and exile.
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Additional info for Figurations of Exile in Hitchcock and Nabokov
He then goes on to argue that Speak, Memory gestures towards a realm of transcendence. In contrast, I would propose that this transcendental gesture might be read as a way to ‘rebel’ against the irrevocable limit of death. Following Alexandrov’s study, the notion of a transcendental otherworld has gained prominence and wide currency in Nabokov criticism. While studies in this area focus on a metaphysical notion of ‘a timeless otherworldly realm that hosts idealized memories and provides personal immortality’ as well as ‘the intuition that souls of the deceased inhabit a parallel world, communicate with the living, and participate in their lives’ (Shrayer 1999: 75), I am interested in moments in which death and the deceased pose a radical alterity and, in so doing, bar the possibility of ‘communication’.
North by Northwest (1959) equally turns around a scenario of troubling home paranoia. Yet more distinctly than the earlier film, the protagonist’s traversal of the Oedipal voyage works towards a symbolic curtailment of the imaginary. The mutual re-establishment of the couple and the national law reflects the film’s recuperation of a symbolic frame of reference. qxp:ANDY Q7 3/11/08 16:20 Page 27 Introduction 27 the ironical alignment of the film’s language with Hollywood codes signals on a meta-texual level that symbolic re-integration always remains ambivalent.
Qxp:ANDY Q7 44 3/11/08 16:20 Page 44 Figurations of Exile in Hitchcock and Nabokov On their walk, Nabokov and Véra anticipate ‘the blissful shock, the enchantment and glee’ Dmitri is about to experience as he will catch sight of the gigantic ships looming behind the row of harbour-front houses (SM: 237). Nabokov’s rendition of the scene describes ‘a splendid ship’s funnel’ which is visible as a fragment behind a clothes-line not as an object having to do with the family’s escape, but as part of a picture puzzle: ‘as something in a scrambled picture – Find What the Sailor Has Hidden – that the finder cannot unsee once it has been seen’ (SM: 237).