Vladimir Nabokov

IVNS Board statement on "The Defense"

By stephen_blackwell, 14 December, 2023


The International Vladimir Nabokov Society recognizes the only approved English-language title of Nabokov's third novel, Zashchita Luzhina, to be The Defense, the title Nabokov gave the novel when he published its translation in 1964 (as opposed to "The Luzhin Defense," which was created by the publisher in order to harmonize commercially with the film with that title, directed by Marleen Gorris and released in 2000). Scholarly works discussing this novel's English-language editions should always use exclusively this title in their main text; bibliographic citations may of course use the name given on the actual item consulted, but should also note the difference between the two titles and the preference for Nabokov's chosen one.

The Vladimir Nabokov Literary Foundation also hopes to have new reissues of the book revert to the original 1964 title.