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The 'Nerves' of Lolita: How the film adaptations of Vladimir Nabokov’s novel support our cultural perception of sexual assault

by camryn gurecki

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Camryn Gurecki is an English major with a concentration in Writing Studies. She is a freshman at Millersville University, and a member of the Honors College. This project was completed for her Honors Explorations in World Literature course in Fall 2021; the assignment asked students to explore a banned book and formulate a unique research question. Camryn chose Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov, determined to prove that the novel was more than the pornography that the public has labeled it to be. Camryn chose specifically to gather information on how changes the filmmakers made to the story, from the over-sexualization of the titular preteen to the erasure of the narrator’s revealing inner dialogue, may contribute to popular culture’s view of sexual assault. She compares the two film adaptations of the novel to the novel itself, and closely examines the significance of these discrepancies in her paper.

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