A Critical Study of Vladimir Nabokov's Theory and Practice of Translation

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Vladimir Nabokov's theory and practice of translation evolved through three distinct and overlapping phases. In the first phase, Nabokov used translation to make literary works accessible to new audiences while preserving the spirit of the work. In the second phase, he made sure the translation was accurate to the original text. In the third and final phase, he argued that future translations should remain faithful to the first translation. This work analyzes and considers Nabokov and his sometimes contradictory philosophy towards translation.


"Though her innovative research into Nabokov's translation of own masterpiece, Lolita, Zhanna Yablokova explores a new landscape - one in which the endeavors of revision and literary translation, she argues, can at times be said to intersect in meaningful ways. ... Using her vast knowledge of both Russian-language and English-language literature - as well her meticulous research on the life's work of Vladimir Nabokov (to include his work not only as a writer but also as a translator of his own and others' writing) - Yablokova thoughtfully invites readers to reconsider Nabokov's theory and practice of literary translation as it evolved throughout his life and career."
Dr. Elizabeth Weaver,
Borough of Manhattan Community College, City College of New York

"Reading Yablokova'a book was for me an exhilarating and enlightening experience. While Nabokov is highly regarded as a writer, his work in the field of literary translation is lesser known and, as as Yablokova rightly points out, worthy of greater recognition. Yablokova is highly knowledgeable about the scholarship on Nabokov's translation practices."
Dr. Jan Stahl,
Borough of Manhattan Community College, City College of New York

Table of Contents

Foreword by Jan Stahl


Chapter One: Nabokov as Translator

Chapter Two: Literal Translation

Chapter Three: Self-Translation

Chapter Four: Nabokov's Self-Translation of Lolita




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