Thread: Lolita?!
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Old 09-17-2015, 04:42 AM
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When children are able to make a conscientious decision to do something or not, knowing the possible repercussions, they are no longer children and you should no longer treat them as such.

When I was in my early teens, I was given access to a completely unfathomable source of knowledge and information (i.e., the internet - I'm fairly young, I think, compared to most of those who browse this forum). Undoubtedly, this lead me to some pretty shocking discoveries - but those discoveries didn't horribly corrupt me as a person (at least, I'd hope not), and I'd like to think that I'm still a pretty decent person.

I understood (understand) - as all healthy people do - that just because something is written about, just because it is on the internet, does not condone the action/thing. No healthy person reads Lolita and says "Hey, I should do that!", including older "children" who are able to understand the novel in the first place.

I'm in no real place to give parenting advice, but the idea of censoring people who are able to make their own decisions just really, really flusters me - especially when they are at an important developmental point in their life. To me, the idea of "banning" Nabokov from your household is akin to (as someone noted before) banning Shakespeare, or even Harry Potter.

If I were ever to become a parent, I would understand that there is a time in a person's life where they not only want to, but have to stop simply emulating their parents. There comes a time where parents change from a mold (as in a crafting/smithing mold), to a guide - otherwise, you have not created a unique human being with unique thoughts and personality, but a mesh of the two parents, retaining some of the obvious flaws.

I'd let my kid read Nabokov (if they wanted to - I wouldn't force it on them, surely), but I'd be certain that, if they do want to, they'd know why the actions taken by the characters of the novel were wrong (or, in the wonderful case of my child reading a bit of philosophy that I do not agree with on a personal level, why I think it's wrong, and where I could be incorrect), and that the characters were by no means positive role models.

After leafing through my own copy, I am reminded of how absolutely stunning Nabokov's prose is. It's hideous in subject matter, but so beautifully written. I swoon at his writing.
"So you are going to relax, cher ami. You are determined to hide your trembling, achieve a few moments of silence, begin smoking one of your delightful cigarettes, and then after this appropriate expenditure of precious time and in the midst of your composure, then you will attempt to dissuade me, to talk me back to sanity (as you will express the idea), to appeal to my kindness and good sense. I approve. I am listening. The hour is yours. But of course you may use the lighter. Only reach for it slowly and keep in mind my warning. Do not be deceived by my good nature. I am as serious as a sheet of flame."

Last edited by Checker; 09-17-2015 at 06:36 AM..
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