Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0001251, Sun, 25 Aug 1996 16:48:00 -0700

Re: queries (fwd)
EDITOR'S NOTE. Ronald Alcalay <ronal@uclink.berkeley.edu>presents the
following query concerning, inter alia, responses to Linda Kauffman's
controversial article called "Framing Lolita." I have mentioned to him
Elizabeth Patnoe's essay in _College Literature_, but NABOKV-L
subscribers doubtless can provide other leads.

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I'm finishing a dissertation chapter on the novel, arguing that
we become the targets of Nabokov's satire when we believe his assertion
that Lolita has no moral "in tow." The entire experience of reading the
novel requires moral confrontation not only with the material, but with
one's wilingness to co-create the story. I believe that the most moral
way to read is similar to Kauffman's, alert to the sex (and the possible
experience of Lolita) that many poetic passages represent, and willing to
acknowledge one's pleasure or ambivalence in reading those passages.

I also have an argument about the structure of the novel, that alternates
between periods of nuymphet-driven fantasy, and intermittent moments of

Does this line of thinking remind you of any recent articles or longer
studies of the novel?

Thanks for giving my querry a moment of consideration,

Ron Alcalay