Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0005157, Wed, 7 Jun 2000 08:08:43 -0700

Re: Kournikova as "Lolita" (fwd)
From: Camille Scaysbrook <verona_beach@hotpop.com>

Of course. For a little background, I am a playwright who specialises in
youth drama and I was once also taught drama and playwriting to teenagers. I
am always highly vocal about people pinholing teenagers as troublemakers or
seeing their stories as valuable only when they are related to some social
malaise or another. They are far, far more intelligent than a good 90% of
the population believe them to be - something I was keenly aware of myself
when I was that age. What distresses me is how strongly many of my students
were unduly influenced by what went on in television shows, magazines, and
the media. It sickens me to think how many girls have damaged themselves
aspiring to impossible ideals - one of which is, as a `liberated' woman, is
having sex at a young age, and taking the consequent physical and emotional
risks. It's just a little frightening that such behaviour is encouraged, and
even more so that it is encouraged to sell records.

Camille Scaysbrook

> For my comment, see below. GD
> From: Camille Scaysbrook <verona_beach@hotpop.com>
> Not `forced' as in personally dragged kicking and screaming - but by
> society. When there is magazines designed for twelve year olds with
> on sexual technique, it's hardly avoidable. But the question always stands
> on very uncertain ground - the very ground that `Lolita' stands on, in
> Was Lolita the sexually voracious one, or was she forced to be? Is Humbert
> portraying an innocent girl in a way that is wholly sexualised, or was she
> really like that?
> The whole `new virgin' trend is very interesting to me - again, Britney
> Spears is telling interviewers that she is a virgin and intends to save
> herself for marriage, but singing about sexual relationships and `hit me
> baby one more time'. It seems to me that this sexualises the image even
> further, it's a manifestation of `pinku' - the Japanese name for the
> obsession with debauching a virgin. It's hardly surprising - marketers
> market to desires, and a lot of men out their would apparently like to
> debauch a virgin, it's as simple as that.
> Camille Scaysbrook
> *** I have to confess, I have never seen "magazines designed for twelve
> year olds with articles on sexual technique." To be fair, my teenage
> daughters and quite a few of their friends subscribe to magazines like THE
> NEW MOON, which is a serious and a very intelligent publication run by a
> bunch of very bright girls from Vermont (if I remember the state
> correctly). Magazines like that hardly existed even fifteen years ago,
> when most of the publications for girls in their teens appealed largely to
> their eyes and hearts but rarely to their brains. So if we are talking
> trends here, this one should be taken into consideration as well for a
> more balanced picture of what is available out there these days. GD***