Lesson 1 (from Book One, Chapters 1-5)
The first three chapters of the novel chronicle Marina, Aqua, and Demon's relationship. The objective of this lesson is to examine that relationship and its role as a prelude to the main story of the novel.
1) As a class, discuss why Nabokov begins the novel with a history of the main characters' families prior to their birth. Why is it important? How might the relationships here relate to the later relationships, both in terms of plot and theme?
2) Divide the class into groups. Assign each group either Marina, Aqua, or Demon. Have each group describe the relationship among the three from the point of view of their particular character. Have each group present their description to the class, and as a class, compare the three perspectives.
3) Have each student write three questions for the author about the opening of the novel and the family history...
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