Jeremy Millar

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Despair
2012

Colour photograph; text

On the morning of 9 May 1930, Hermann Hermann, the protagonist of Vladimir Nabokov's novel Despair, was on a business trip to Prague. Finding himself early for his meeting, he decided to walk up Petrin Hill, which overlooks the city. While ascending the hill, he discovered a man sleeping; Hermann took him for his double, with tragic consequences.

On the morning of 9 May 2012, I found myself in Prague, and decided to walk up Petrin Hill. At the very start of my walk I, too, discovered a man sleeping beneath a bush; I decided not to see what he looked like.

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