Prufrock's Page

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Reading Lolita In 2005

Yet another piece on the 50th anniversary of Nabokov's nymphet -- but this one is interesting, informative and thought-provoking. Allen Barra gently chides Azar Nafisi (of Reading Lolita in Teheran) and owns up to his dismay in realising that Nabokov's view of the novel -- and of art -- may have been colder and narrower than he'd have liked:

"Nafisi, I think, is wrong in seeing social and political intent in Lolita, but she is not wrong in wanting them to be there. Some of you are going to be receiving the 50th anniversary edition of Lolita as my Christmas gift, and I want you to love the book as much as I do. But it will come with a little card that contains a proviso: Reading Nabokov can be an unparalleled delight, but idealizing him, accepting literature on his terms, can negate what you loved about literature in the first place."


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