The article by Pan Shan (Peking University) and Ulrich Eschborn (Beijing Institute of Technology), “Nabokov’s Lolita in China: Its Reception and the Rise of Popular Literature,” analyzes the connections between the rise of popular culture in mainland China and the publication history of Lolita, which was first published there in Chinese in 1989. In the first section, we explain that, in the decade after the Cultural Revolution, publishers used the more market-oriented and more liberal climate to profit economically by publishing translations of previously forbidden Western books. The second part of the article compares a passage from Wang Shuo’s popular novel Fierce Animals (1991) to the passage from Lolita in which Humbert Humbert first encounters Lolita. This comparison reveals striking parallels and serves as an example of how Nabokov’s novel figures as one element in the tremendous rise of Chinese popular culture.
Nabokov’s Lolita in China: Its Reception and the Rise of Popular Literature
Periodical or collection
Nabokov Online Journal