This will probably sound odd coming from someone who is quite conservative and nominated Portrait of Jennie, but since there seems to be considerable controversy about Lolita and its suitability for a forum selection, some points are worth considering.
First of all, Lolita is emphatically not a novel which glorifies paedophilia. Nabokov stated that Humbert is "a vicious and cruel wretch and a hateful person". He called the novel "a study in tyranny" and the central character is insane. The references to Edgar Allen Poe tie into this. We are dealing with a twisted and deeply flawed character.
Secondly, as a literary creation, Lolita is brilliantly written and considered one of the 100 best novels of the twentieth century. It implies that only a profoundly sick cultural ethos would produce a monster like Humbert.
Thirdly, this brings us to the question as to whether or not in is a suitable novel for a "family friendly" literary forum. And I am totally opposed to works written for purely prurient tastes. Well, Lolita is taught in universities. Should it be discussed in a forum of this type? There is no doubt but that this is a very disturbing novel and I can personally understand why some people would rather not read it--but the same would apply to King Lear which is even more disturbing--cosmically, ethically, spiritually So-- does "family friendly" exclude that--one of the most titanic works in Western Literature? Or any work that is disturbing?
Personally, while everyone has a right to opt out of anything they find not worth their reading time, a genuinely literary work examining significant themes should always be allowed for those who feel its significance deserves examination.
Last edited by fantasyfan; 01-20-2013 at 07:23 PM.