The Gnostic Hunters in Nabokov’s 'The Real Life of Sebastian Knight'

Abstract

Nabokov’s The Real Life of Sebastian Knight presents the ambiguous identities of the two heroes, V. and Sebastian, attracting great attention among Nabokovian scholarship. The present article intends to reveal that Nabokov’s design of Sebastian and V. pertains to his own Gnostic faith and the ambiguous identities of V. and Sebastian, in light of certain Gnostic tenets and concepts, are the representation of their spiritual evolution and their merging spirits during their respective quest of “gnosis”. The article will show how the heroes as “aliens” break the shackles of “this world,” undo the chains of the heavy flesh, regain their spiritual identities of the inner selves, start the journey of spiritual evolution and self-revelation, and finally achieve the fusion of spirits in “the other world” by way of attaining “gnosis”.         &nbsp

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