NABOKV-L post 0021144, Wed, 5 Jan 2011 15:59:44 -0500

Lolita complex ...
Lolita complex

Opinion 2011-01-04 18:43

Translated by DOMINIC LOH

There are more and more Lolitas in our midst.

- A 12-year-old girl ran away from home under the influence of her cousin brother.
- Another 12-year-old girl had sex with six different men and was reportedly pregnant.
- A 14-year-old girl ran away with a foreign worker and ended up in the man's country.
- Another 14-year-old girl fell for her 23-year-old teacher and was said to have married him.

There is a common name for all these young but excessively premature girls in culturology: Lolita, a term derived from US writer Vladimir Nabokov's literary classic of the same name.

Middle-aged professor Humbert fell for the landlady's 12-year-old daughter Lolita when he was renting a room.

In order to approach Lolita, he even went to the extent of marrying his landlady with the hope the new relationship would get him closer to his dream girl. After the landlady was killed in a road accident years later, Humbert took Lolita away on a vagabond trip.

Along the way Humbert tried to take control of Lolita's physique by means of intimidation as well as material seduction, while the girl was making use of his uncontrollable ecstasy to launch her mental retaliation.

Lolita later managed to free herself from the hellish life, with her suitor desperately pursuing her.

Several years later, in a dilapidated house, he found the much devastated Lolita.

Overwhelmed by the commanding animosity, Humbert took the life of the man who took Lolita away years earlier, and got himself convicted and sentenced to death.

This is a hair-raising novel that hits out straight at the immoral humanity and is impregnated with tonnes of severely distorted depictions of carnal lusts.

The novel was dismissed as immoral by the American society half a century ago. No publishers were willing to publish Nabokov's work, and the writer had to take his work to France for publication. The book later came back to the English-speaking world with renowned film director Stanley Kubrick making it into a motion picture.

Many years later, Nabokov's work was re-evaluated and recognised as a literary classic. Lolita was ranked fourth in New York Times best English novels of the century.

Lolita's literary value lies with its vivid illustration of human nature, its moral struggle as well as the depravation of carnal lusts.

It protrudes the anomaly of paedophilia of a middle-aged man. Not only was Humbert physically involved, he was also plunged into unfathomable pit of mental helplessness.

Many adult men have such inclination of so-called Lolita complex, which could be a social malady or a psychological disorder that lurks all around us.

Their wayward affection for young girls could stem from their unchecked passion for virginity giving rise to their desire to occupy and take control.

In Nabokov's book, Humbert had cultivated a deep passion for the elves in fairytale when he was young, resulting in his deprivation of real childhood playmates.

From psychological disorder to social malady, this Lolita complex flourishes in the estranged environment of our modern society.

Sin Chew Daily

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