As John Ray informs us in his Foreword, Lolita’s “first name is too closely interwound with the inmost fiber of the book to allow one to alter it” (4), and indeed the story both begins and ends with Lolita’s name. And yet, we only see Lolita through Humbert’s eyes, through his desire, through his insanity, and through his memory.
Humbert tells us, “I would like to describe her face, her ways – and I cannot, because my own desire for her blinds me when she is near” (44); Humbert seems to be so wrapped up in his passion for her that he cannot see her clearly. Therefore, even though he spend many pages meticulously describing her body, personality, and life, the Lolita we see is through Humbert’s gaze, not Lolita herself (or as she sees herself) …
So, here’s your opportunity to give voice to Lolita, to re-tell the story, the same story, but from her point of view. There are no rules, no word limits, nothing is off-limits, nothing you should do, except to tell a particular scene/aspect of the text from little Lo’s perspective. Does she focus obsessively on Humbert? Does she totally ignore him? Does she love him? Does she hate him? Is she scared of him? Does she know what he’s trying to do? Does she care? (etc. etc)
*You should complete this post (no word limit, but I encourage much longer than the normal 250 word minimum) the night before our next class (Th 10/17), and categorize it as “Lolita’s impressions. Please make sure to indicate what scene/part of the text you are re-telling (provide section & numbers).
*This is an optional blog, but if you choose to do it, you will earn extra credit (it will make up for one missed blog if you missed one already, or it will give you extra points if you’ve done them all). We’ll vote on the most convincing/creative post next week … so have fun with it 🙂