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Nabokov's Butterflies

Posted on February 02 2011

Vladimir Nabokov wasn’t just the author of the classic novels Lolita and Pale Fire; he was also an expert entomologist whose theories on butterfly migration are finally getting the respect they deserve. As Carl Zimmer reports in The New York Times: “He was the curator of lepidoptera at the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University, and he collected the insects across the United States. He published detailed descriptions of hundreds of species. And in a speculative moment in 1945, he came up with a sweeping hypothesis for the evolution of the butterflies he studied….”

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