Vladimir Nabokov Writing Styles in Speak, Memory: An Autobiography Revisited

This Study Guide consists of approximately 60 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Speak, Memory.
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Character

Individual figures play important roles in Speak, Memory but not necessarily commensurate to the number of pages devoted to them or to the chronological span they spent with Nabokov. Individual family members, passing acquaintances, temporary lovers and love objects, tutors and governesses, occasional artists, all contribute to Nabokov's recreation of lost time and place.

Image

Nabokov fills Speak, Memory with images of verdant pathways, glittering reflections, luminous butterflies, colorful book illustrations, and small intricate oddities such as patterns of match boxes and even a remembered replica of an oversized pencil. Image is used to convey both trans-temporal aesthetic pleasure and time-specific memory recovery.

Word Play

Nabokov's style makes elaborate use of imagery, word play, puns, and pranks. In Speak, Memory, he constructs fictitious names for several figures, ostensibly to protect their privacy but also, probably, to make biographers, literary historians, and critics work harder.

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This section contains 247 words
(approx. 1 page at 400 words per page)
Buy the Speak, Memory: An Autobiography Revisited Study Guide
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Nonfiction Classics for Students
Speak, Memory: An Autobiography Revisited from Nonfiction Classics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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