Vladimir Nabokov

NABOKV-L post 0001492, Sat, 30 Nov 1996 14:08:26 -0800

Query: Obsession in Lolita and Pnin (fwd)
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: L.Serck <L.Serck@rhbnc.ac.uk>

Hello!! I am so glad to have discovered your site. I suppose I had
better introduce myself. Well, my name is Linda Serck and I am currently
studying at the Uni of London; Royal Holloway College to be exact. I am
doing my final year in reading English Literature, and final year means
dissertation, that dreaded elongated word.

You may have guessed that my dissertation has something to do with
Nabokov, hence my flurried attempt to communicate with you. Well, my
dissertation is centred upon a study of obsession and narrative in 'The
Great Gatsby', 'Lolita' and 'Pnin'. I will (hopefully) be covering
issues such as the unreliable narrator (Nick Carraway and narrator in
'Pnin') questioning and analysing whether the narrators are obsessed.
Also I will be looking at how obssession is conveyed by the two authors,
the realist obsession of Humbert in 'Lolita' and the romanticised
obsession of Gatsby by Nick in 'The Great Gatsby', and how both
obsessive dreams are vulgarised by reality.

At the moment, I am rather unprepared to write this dissertation, this
is the first time I have been required to write anything above 3,500
words, so I am a bit stuck about where to start exactly. Therefore, I
would most certainly appreciate any comments, discussions, advice,
information about the role and portrayal of obsession in Lolita, and the
perhaps sinister undertones of obsession of the narrator in 'Pnin'.

I would love to hear from anyone, really. I think discussions and
comments are always a good place to start, especially coming from people
who know about, and perhaps specialise in, Nabokov.

I hope to be in contact with one of you soon. Unfortunately I am
probably only able to have access to e-mail on Friday afternoons, as our
college computer centre usually holds many computer courses, and the
remaining computers are eagerly claimed by stressed-out students who
need to hand in an essay the next day. Friday seems to be the only day
when everyone breathes out around here.

Anyway, I look forward to hearing from you soon,

Best wishes, Linda Serck