Vladimir Nabokov

Couturier, Maurice. Sensuality and the Senses in Nabokov. 2020

Bibliographic title
Sensuality and the Senses in Nabokov
Publisher, city
Periodical or collection
The Five Senses in Nabokov's Works
Publication year
The senses involved in the structuring of the characters’ sensuality in King, Queen, Knave, Lolita, and Ada do not differ substantially, yet they manage to produce three different types of sensuality, a shameful one, a guilty one, and an Edenic one. These types are largely the effect of three different kinds of narrative discourses, the first one being chiefly ironic, the second passionate, and self-vindicating, and the third dazzled and highly poetic. Nabokov was acutely aware of being haunted by tyrannical sexual desires and a polymorphous kind of sensuality but he managed to tame them and put them to use to create highly sensual works teeming with poetic images.