An Elephant Versed in Literature, Linguistics, Lepidoptery, et al.

From an article in The New Yorker about academic creative writing programs:

Harvard once considered hiring Nabokov to teach literature; Roman Jakobson, then a professor of linguistics there, is supposed to have asked whether the university was also prepared to hire an elephant to teach zoology.

To be fair, previous teaching experience qualified him for the job, but I doubt Harvard was counting on his reputation as a comparative literature lecturer.

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