Analysis Of Vladimir Nabokov 's ' Good Readers And Good Writers '

1049 Words Aug 30th, 2015 5 Pages
Vladimir Nabokov in his essay, “Good Readers and Good Writers,” talks about six different criteria for what makes up a good writer. They are: deceiver, magician, inventor, teacher, storyteller, and enchanter, and Fredrick Douglas in his narrative on when he was a slave, does not meet all of these criteria. “Every great writer is a great deceiver, but so is that arch-cheat Nature,” (Nabokov 1028). As a deceiver himself in his writing, Douglas does not make a large impression, he does a little deceiving in a small way, but it comes off as an undersight carrying an implicit meaning than an intentional deceiving for the sake of his narrative. “I have had two masters,” this is deceiving as he has served five men for terms of time, Anthony; Hugh Auld; Lloyd; Covery, for a year; and William Freeland, although he was only ever legally owned by two men, the fact remains that he has served five men, and that is without even including the time he served in the boatyard in Baltimore and was to treat every worker there as a master. So in that case, he served more than two men as a master, and therefore his statement was deceiving. “When he perished at last, the story told about him aquired a good lesson in the dark around the campfire. But he was the little magician. He was the inventor,” (Nabokov 1028). Douglas falls short on this mark as a writer, as he doesn’t do any shifting of attention or anything along those lines during his narrative, however as a character in his own…

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