Read By: Francisco Goldman - 92Y, New York

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Read By: Francisco Goldman

Aug 23, 2020

Francisco Goldman on his selection: 

My reading is from Vladimir Nabokov's novel, Pnin. Timofey Pnin, Russian emigre professor at Wainsdell College somewhere in the Northeast, has belatedly just learned to drive, and has undertaken the drive to the summer house of the wealthy emigre Alexandr Petrovich Kukolnikov, otherwise known as Al Cook. There other emigre intellectuals, artists, liberals, etc, are gathered. Lonely Pnin, often a figure of fun, has sat down to relax a bit after trouncing his competitors in croquet, when he experiences one of those episodes of nervous or even cardiac unease that in this novel signals a dissolving of the separation of past and present. This passage is about how those we've lost return; how in an idyllic-seeming present, the monstrousness of the past can still, at least momentarily, grip our hearts again; how loss and the past, both monstrous and sweet, permeate the present.   

Pnin at 


Intro and outro from "Shift of Currents" by Blue Dot Sessions // CC BY-NC 2.0

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Categories: Literary Read By

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