Lolita by Vladamirs Nabokov

analytical Essay
1981 words
1981 words

Vladamirs Nabokov’s novel titled Lolita explores the taboo topic of pedophilia and obsession. Humbert Humbert, the main character, has always had a strong attraction to young girls around the ages twelve to thirteen or nymphets as he likes to call him. He watches them play in the park, likes to look at pictures of Girl Scouts and enjoys watching them swim in the pool. Humbert reflecting on his life tries to justify his actions that have landed him in jail by writing them down in a manuscript. He writes to his readers about how he met Lolita, the twelve year old daughter of his landlady, and chronicles how he constantly fantasies about fondeling her body and eventually taking sexual action towards her. He also kidnaps her after her mother dies and often gives Lolita toys, magazines, clothes and money in exchange for sexual favors. Though out the entirety of the novel Humbert writes about how much stress and anxiety he experiences by attempting to hide his pedophilia and how fearful he is of his secret being found out.
Does Lolita give an accurate representation of the psychological disorder pedophilia? By looking at certain components of pedophilia sectioned off in this paper one can surmise that Lolita gives a fair rendition of the characteristics pedophilia can manifest itself in an individual but not necessarily a complete story of the disorder.
Onset and Course:
In Lolita Humbert Humbert describes the circumstances in which he believes his obsession with nymphets began. He describes a time when he was about thirteen and met his first love Annabel who was around the same age. So enraptured with each other, they tried to sneak off from their parents multiple times for sex. However they were so closely watched and so often int...

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... between low intelligence and pedophilia. There is no indication of associated problems in living despite the possible problems found in relationship deficits. The novel also never mentions anything about treatment of pedophilia and Humbert dies in prison, however, pedophiles in the federal system do receive treatment in the form of cognitive behavior therapy that can involve group talk sessions and aversive conditioning. The only substantial commonality Lolita seems to share with the actual description of pedophilia is a strong enduring sexual interest in prepubescent children. One possibility for this is that in the novel, Humbert Humbert is the narrator and consistently tries to downplay his disorder in order to evoke sympathy from his readers. This makes his rendition of events slightly unreliable. This makes it only a fair representation of pedophilia.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how vladamirs nabokov's novel titled lolita explores the taboo topic of pedophilia and obsession.
  • Opines that lolita gives an accurate representation of the psychological disorder pedophilia.
  • Analyzes how humbert's obsession with nymphets began when he met his first love annabel, who died of typhus four months later.
  • Analyzes how humbert's novel doesn't take cultural and gender considerations into account, but it is consistent by making him a male since the dsm-v states that the highest prevalence for male pedophiles in the population is about 3%-5%.
  • Explains that there are many theories as to why an adult develops pedophilia, including emotional congruence and a multifactor model. the only theory that could apply to humbert is that he was in love with the child
  • Opines that more research needs to be done on why there is a physical attraction to the child. humbert became fixated on annabel before she died and is attracted to girls who are representative of her.
  • Analyzes how the third factor titled blockage provides theories as to why pedophiles are hindered to get their needs met in a consenting adult relationship.
  • Analyzes how disinhibition tries to explain why inhibitions against having sex with children in normal adults are overcome in adults.
  • Analyzes how humbert fantasizes about his nymphets and masturbates to one he sees undressing in a window. he is paranoid about people discovering his sexual relationship with lolita and taking her away.
  • Compares the novel's symptoms of pedophilia and symptoms through research. one study in 2004 indicates that poorer cognitive scores are associated with greater pedophilic tendencies.
  • Analyzes how an article about the relational attitude of pedophiles suggests that they have relationships deficits. humbert never admits to having close friendships and is constantly surrounded by unwanted attention from adult women.
  • Explains that relationship deficits in pedophiles could leave them unhappy with life and unable to function throughout day to day. humbert doesn't seek meaningful relationships unless there is a benefit to him.
  • Explains that cognitive behavioral therapy uses group sessions and individual sessions to help participants develop empathy for their victims and better problem solving skills.
  • Analyzes how the novel lolita gives a fair representation of pedophilia but not an entirely accurate one.
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