Stephen Blackwell, professor of Russian studies and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures, and Kurt Johnson, editors, have published Fine Lines: Nabokov’s Scientific Art in Yale University Press (2016). In addition to the introduction, Blackwell has contributed his own chapter to this collection of essays by leading Nabokov scholars: “Nabokov’s Morphology: An Experiment in Appropriated Terminology.”
Blackwell’s major work as editor of this milestone publication, which includes a critical introduction, essays, black and white figures as well as color plates, is well summarized in the following comments of early readers.
“This collection explains to the layman just why Nabokov’s scientific work was so successful and important. The drawings are absolutely stunning—even to someone without a scientific background they are arresting. Lepidoperists will surely want to own it, but more importantly, this will be a treasure for Nabokov fans.”—Eric Naiman, author of Nabokov, Perversely
“This is a very valuable contribution to understanding one of the great novelists of the twentieth century. It is a superb example of how a creative mind can combine art and science in ways that make them both greater than they would have otherwise been. A landmark book.”—Thomas E. Lovejoy, George Mason University
“What makes this volume special is not so much its attempt to merge Nabokov’s philosophy and science but its ability to include all the relevant authors on the subject of Nabokov’s dual nature.”—Nina Khruscheva, author of Imagining Nabokov: Russian Between Art and Politics
“Fine Lines presents a welcome and rare insight into Nabokov’s obsessive attention to detail so prominent in his writing. The rich collection of his illustrations reveals an unintended artistry born out of meticulous observation.”—Rob Kesseler, coauthor of Pollen: The Hidden Sexuality of Flowers
“The wonderful drawings and remarkable essays in this book allow us to trace Nabokov’s steps in many ways and on many pages. The result is a long closeup of an ideal form of curiosity.”—Michael Wood, Princeton University