Monday, March 2, 2009

Reading Lolita in Tehran

I am enjoying this book a lot so far. One of the most interesting parts of the book to me has been the similarities between Azar Nafisi's writing style, and that of Nabokov. For instance on page 35 where we are given a quote from Lolita, Nafisi says that one of the ways you can tell Nabokov's brilliance is through his ability to juxtapose insignificant objects with tense feelings and emotions in order to create a mood that foreshadows Humbert's true character. On page 40, Nafisi does a similar thing with the last line of section 12 "We take turns; every week, one of us provides the pastry." Such a regular normal sentence that is of no significance in our everyday lives seems to stand out so much in theirs. Too me the line was extremely strange because the lines preceding this quote were talking about how the girls in the group were Xeroxing Lolita because they didn't have access to books like it. You have this image of harsh meaningless oppression, juxtaposed with the act of something mundane. I knew it all along obviously, but this line just screamed to me "they are human."

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