Proof that there actually was a “Golden Age of Television”: Vladimir Nabokov (above, left) and Lionel Trilling (right) appearing together in 1958 on the CBC’s Close Up, discussing Lolita.
As Thomas McGrath observes in Dangerous Minds,
Nabokov himself, shuffling his famous index cards (he insisted upon preparing his answers in advance, and reading them aloud), was in the midst of a very rich vein of form indeed, one that resulted not only in Lolita but also Pnin and Pale Fire. He is bright-eyed, ironical, eccentric, amusing and wholly indifferent to the kind of impression his controversial masterpiece (which has since sold more than fifty million copies) was making to 1950s America.
And as for those index cards, Paris Review explains…
As we settle down on the heels of Banned Books Week, we might recall that it was on this date in 1946 that the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Serge Koussevitzky premiered Aaron Copland’s third and final symphony– known ever since, as Leonard Bernstein put it, as “the epitome of a decades-long search by many composers for a distinctly American music.”
Copland’s Third Symphony is in the traditional format (four movements; second movement, scherzo; third movement, adagio), and, at 40 minutes, is his longest orchestral composition. He wrote it explicitly with Koussevitzky in mind– and succeeded mightily, as the conductor called the the work “simply the greatest American symphony ever written.”