Re: RARA-AVIS: RE : Lolita and noir

From: Kerry J. Schooley (
Date: 26 Feb 2007

At 05:09 PM 25/02/2007, you wrote:

>Well, Kerry, if you find yourself giggling to relieve
>the tension as you read Nabakov's poetic reference to
>a 14-year-old girl's vulva,

You've applied the motivation here, not me. In fact, I'm not sure I said anything to imply why I might find Lolita full-tilt funny. You don't know me, and you cannot read my mind, yet you feel comfortable attributing a specific motivation to my statement.

In reading fiction, the reader often has only the slimmest of evidence to determine the motivations of characters, narrators and even less for authors. This is particularly true in Hardboil and Noir, where there's a strong stylistic tendency to avoid internal dialogue and other character revealing techniques except dialogue and behaviour. Much is left to the reader, but if the author has one of his characters say "I thought Lolita was hilariously funny from beginning to end," do you believe the character, find the character is not credible or decide that the author is immoral?

> I'd say the humor is more
>in the reader than it is in the writing.

That may be. I'm still inclined to think that in art, meaning is a collaboration between the author and the reader, and not always a successful one.

> Just my

Well, that was my point to begin with.

Best, Kerry

------------------------------------------------------ Literary events Calendar (South Ont.) The evil men do lives after them

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 26 Feb 2007 EST