humbert humbert s understanding of take pleasure



The problem with an unreliable narrator often lies in choosing points to believe. In the case of Vladimir Nabokov’s incestuously dubious novel Lolita, it proves to be a great intriguing situation, as the unreliability of narrator Humbert Humbert is undoubtedly severe, however his persuasive intellect persuades the reader to at least consider his point of view and reasoning. Among Humbert’s primary goals in his testimony is to persuade his “jury” that he was basically in love with his pre-pubescent stepdaughter ” to whom he essentially kidnapped and repeatedly had taken advantage of sexually ” he is somehow in a position to have us consider his disturbing and inconceivable claim as truthful, an sign of his powerful cogency. So is it feasible that this obviously unreliable and heinous pedophile loved Lolita as he says he performed? As not likely of a idea as it is, there are many indications that his feelings were a lot more than carnally powered. He possibly says to his market at a spot when he offers nothing to gain in asking, “You may well jeer by me, and threaten in order to the court docket, but right up until I am gagged and half-throttled, I will shout my poor real truth. I firmly insist the world recognize how much I actually loved my own Lolita, this kind of Lolita, light and infected, and big with another’s child¦but still mine” [Nabokov, 278]. Indeed, there are many signals (such since this) that period to truth behind the pathological pedophile’s claim, in fact , there is enough evidence within his reflection to prove that Humbert do actually take pleasure in Lolita. Or rather, he loved her or in other words of what he comprehended love to look like. In regular terms, Humbert had simply no right classifying his relationship with Lolita as appreciate, but through the twisted perspective of a man with obvious mental imbalance it was like in the only way that he realized how to share it. Because love is definitely a difficult indifference to define ” the aberrant obsession that Humbert had with Lolita demonstrates his personal belief of love, and additional allows the audience to übung into the origins and rationale of a disturbed pedophile’s belief of love.

The non-traditional and appalling understanding of appreciate that Humbert holds can easily be comprehended by noticing the garbled fate of his childhood. While about the same age as his reverred Lolita, he began a romantic relationship with a youthful girl called Annabel Leigh, which he similarly viewed as love, expressing, “All at once we were madly, clumsily, shamelessly, agonizingly fond of each other” [Nabokov, 12]. This infatuation certainly proved to be nothing more than an adolescent grind, which by Humbert’s personal account was bent on sexual experimentation. When Annabel tragically perished of typhus, just weeks after Humbert’s second and final potential for “possessing” her, he started to be trapped in the juvenile comprehension of an incredibly highly effective emotion. As of this early adolescent point of Humbert’s lifestyle he had already begun to work with the term ‘love’ loosely, fantastic appreciation from the word’s meaning was not fully realized. Through his very own account with their relationship it appears that their straightforward passion for competitive rugby as well as their particular sexual curiosities were the only shared interests between the two, and because on this premature love, (her sudden death did not allow it to full bloom into some thing of accurate endearment), Humbert began to affiliate love and lust as interchangeable. After her passing, Humbert was never capable of shake his unquenchable desire for the small ‘nymphet’ who he never managed to ‘posses, ‘ nor was this individual able to clear his psyche of the fallacious perception of affection that had developed within just him.

This phony sense of affection, rooted in both lust and nympholepsy, follows Humbert throughout his life and finally reaches the climax with Lolita. The first few descriptions of his feelings toward Lolita are all literally driven, when he is unable to give attention to anything but her ‘honey-hued shoulder blades, ‘ or perhaps ‘juvenile breasts, ‘ [Nabokov, 39] fantastic passion to get Lolita generally seems to parallel his love of Annabel ” albeit more extreme. Actually he possibly spends a great while planning to teach Lolita how to enjoy tennis competitively, which symbolizes the unrelenting cycle of destruction that his infatuation held above him, through its correspondence to his pubescent marriage with Annabel. However , after he has already had sexual relations with Lolita, found her become pregnant by an additional man, and gazes upon what this individual calls “the faint purple whiff and dead tea leaf echo with the nymphet, inch [Nabokov, 277] ” it is just then that he finally and completely professes his true love of Lolita. This assertion triggers the reader to wonder if he actually did undergo a big change ” if perhaps he performed indeed develop a true understanding of love, individual of the juvenile one he had carried with him through his your life. If he claimed to still have adored her in a point when she was seventeen years of age, and having the child of another gentleman, it indicates that he had been through some sort of change, which his feelings for Lolita were greater than a carnal passion of her youthful appearance.

The transformation of Humbert is undeniable, nevertheless does it symbolize love? The truth is, Humbert had not been lying when he said he loved Lolita, because in his mind this individual did appreciate her to his maximum capacity. The problem is Humbert did not know very well what true love intended, and his method of expressing like was terrible. According to the applicable perception with the word, Humbert did not take pleasure in Lolita, but despite his despicable demeanor, it is unfair to imagine he would not believe he loved her. Evidently, the debate above whether Humbert actually performed love Lolita is certainly not cut and dried, it is just a very complicated issue. Problem that is extremely hard to ignore presents itself ” how can a person who plotted the murder of his own partner in order to have sex freedom along with his twelve-year-old stepdaughter, say this individual loved her? Further, just how can he guard this declare after controlling her, sexually abusing her, and murdering the first man your woman claimed to have had authentic feelings for [Nabokov, 279]? Yet what does he have to gain in declaring that this individual loved her, when his grave fate is already sealed? Nothing. And this more than anything he directly says, demonstrates that he believed this individual loved her, because he got no explanation to rest.

What then would love look like to Humbert Humbert, and exactly how did it differ from the established connotation? Primarily, love when he understood that knew not any boundaries. Although he was aware of the unusualness and illegality of his desire, this individual did not consider it off restrictions. The age difference between him and his much loved was of no hindrance, as this kind of ordinarily unacceptable ‘love’ had not been to be deterred. The second and most important component of Humbert’s understanding of love was your lack of mutuality that it necessitated for him. That Humbert was able to love without being adored back, as well as the fact that he attempted to draw out love out of Lolita, illustrates the radically mistaken understanding of endearment that he possessed. Lastly, as mentioned earlier on, an unhealthy equilibrium of lust and perversité consumed his notion of love, as few details will be spared in the chronicling of his lovemaking desires and ‘accomplishments’ within the young nymphet.

Evidently Humbert’s getting pregnant of love was obviously a tragic misconception, but to him, it was appreciate non-etheless. Problem should for that reason not become whether Humbert loved Lolita, rather it will seek whether Humbert understood what it designed to love when he claimed to have been in like. If he previously understood what meant to genuinely love, he would have desired what was best for Lolita ” he would have got accepted the very fact that an illicit relationship was unfair to her (even if she opted for it, ) and he’d have loved her like a father figure, within a non-romantic approach. Unfortunately, Humbert’s instability do this realization impossible and his perilous delusion overtook him, because his wrong impression of affection caused him to “break her life” [Nabokov, 279], which will he finally admits. The sad reality is that the vicious fate of Humbert’s 1st relationship sent him right into a terminal spin out of control, which he could never recover from. His mental imbalance and pedophilia allowed him to rationalize all of his disgusting activities in the name of like. Consequently, having been not lying when he believed to have liked Lolita, he simply loved her in the only way he knew how to, which regrettably was very misconceived.


Nabokov, Vladimir. The Annotated Lolita. Impotence. Alfred Ordre, Jr. Nyc: Vintage, 1991.

  • Category: literature
  • Words: 1512
  • Pages: 6
  • Project Type: Essay

Need an Essay Writing Help?
We will write a custom essay sample on any topic specifically for you
Do Not Waste Your Time
Only $13.90 / page