Lolita Podcast

Jan 18 2021 70 mins 2.9k

Who is Lolita? The Nabokov literary classic has sparked infinite discussion in the 65 years since its release, but the cultural memory the book has left behind lives more in romance and fashion aesthetics than a cautionary tale about a deceptive predator and his young prey. Jamie Loftus wants to know how we got here, and this series traces Lolita -- the person, Dolores Haze -- from her literary origin to current status as a doomed icon.

8: Dolores Logs In
Jan 18 2021 79 mins  
This week, Jamie dives down the rabbit hole of Lolita blogs and fan communities, beginning in the early 2000s and through now, and a look at the non-sexual nymphet fashion movement that Nabokov's book inspired. It's... complicated. Ms. Lola on Youtube: Lolita in the Afterlife: Ways of Seeing, E1: The Parasocial Phenomenon (Nova): Grooming: The Revisionist History of the Nymphet Community (corrected by someone who was actually there) by Nilijah Myeesa: Why Black Girlhood is Not Valued in the Coquette/Nymphet Community: Sarah Kathryn Cleaver on Lolita Tumblr: When Dolores Haze Gets a Tumblr: Online "Nymphet" Culture and the Reclaiming of Lolita by Mishka Hoosen: Schyler Reign on Non-Sexual Nymphet Fashion: Watch This Before You Get Into Nymphet Fashion: Criticism for Nymphet Fashion & The Community: Are You a Nymphet? The self-- harmed, visualized and reblogged: Self-iinjury ono Tumblr: Rachel Davis's Lolita Tumblr thesis: Nerdymixedpan on TikTok: Learn more about your ad-choices at

7 (Part 1): That Time David Mamet Wrote a Draft of Lolita (And Other Hollywood Tragedies)
Jan 11 2021 64 mins  
It's high time we talk about the 1997 movie adaptation of Lolita by Adrian Lyne. Between Stanley Kubrick's adaptation in 1962 and Dominique Swain playing Lolita in the '90s. In part one of this two-parter, we take a look at knock-off Lolita productions, how the conversation around child sex abuse changes in Hollywood and America in the 80s and 90s, and how Stranger Danger misses the mark going into the '90s. Notes: Adrian Lyne talking Lolita in '98: Lolita Comes Again (Esquire '98): Natalie Portman talks Lolita: That Roman Polanski Petition: Lolita Behind the Scenes Featurette '97: Lolita Screen Test: Twinky (1970): Jodie Foster and Taxi Driver: Polly Platt: The Invisible Woman (YMRT): Brooke Shields reflects on Pretty Baby: Samantha Geimer on 60 Minutes: Milk Carton Kids: Stranger Danger & Mass Incarceration: RAINN Statistics: Learn more about your ad-choices at

6: Lolita the Cover Girl, Lolita the Pop Star
Jan 04 2021 78 mins  
How long have we been judging Lolita by its cover? To be fair, they're not much help. This week, Jamie guides you through a crash course on Lolita/nymphet aesthetics -- when we say 'Lolita,' what are we really talking about? We take a look at the visual legacy of Lolita's book covers, persistence in advertising and how misreads of the text have been haunting pop music for generations. Join our Discord: Playlist of Music Discussed in today's episode: Ms. Lola's "we need to talk about Lolita": Dakota Fanning in the 'Oh Lola!' Lolita Lempicka with Elle Fanning, 2012: Love's Baby Soft: Bradley Cooper and Suki Waterhouse Daily Mail story: Lolicon: Nerdymixedpan TikTok about Lolita, Lolicon and Lolita fashion: Lolita: Story of a Cover Girl: Moi, Lolita music video: "Men Explain Fiona Apple to Me": Rolling Stone: Britney Spears 1999 profile: Rolling Stone Reflecting on this profile, 2011: Dave LaChapelle's celebrity photography: "Surviving R. Kelly" Full Series: "Why Has R. Kelly Been in Jail for the Past Year?" 8/2020:,that%20included%20kidnapping%2C%20forced%20labor%2C R. Kelly: The History of Allegations Against Him 8/2020: Surviving R. Kelly': Threats and New Abuse Details: R. Kelly Girlfriend Joycelyn Savage Speaks Out, Saying She is a 'Victim': The True Story of R. Kelly and Aaliyah's Relationship: R. Kelly Paid Bribe So That He Could marry 15-Year-Old Aaliyah, Government Alleges: Why Lana Del Rey Is Under Fire for Her Most Recent Comments About Women in Music: Lana Del Rey's White Fragility Contextualized Within the United States' Anti-Blackness: Lana, don't use Black women to make your point.: Lana Del Rey Has Lana Del LOST IT: Lana Del Rey / Die Zeit Interview: Lana Del Rey The Fader Interview 2014: Learn more about your ad-choices at

5: Dolores Onstage
Dec 21 2020 83 mins  
Trigger warning: this episode contains discussion of child sex abuse and pedophilia. "Who is that viper that likes them post-diaper?" This is just one of the objectively terrifying lyrics in a botched Broadway musical of Lolita -- the first an expensive, campy musical from the writer of My Fair Lady in the 70s, and another gritty reboot from Edward Albee starring Edward Albee in the 80s. We speak to the actors who played Lolita about the public pressures put on by the productions and the public, look at the many stage failures from the inside and out, and listen to lighthearted Broadway tunes about the worst crime a human can commit. If you are seeking resources about sexual assault: Join our Discord: Discussed in today's episode: "Lolita My Love" -- a recording from 1971 in Boston: Sarah Weinman's "Yes, They Once Tried to Make a Musical Out of Lolita", 2018: "You're a Dum Dum": Blood Pageant from Chris Gilmore: "Thank Heaven For Little Girls": Edward Albee's Lolita (1981): NYT Review of Albee's Lolita: "Who's Afraid of White Fragility?" Hyperallergic, 2017: "Albee Estate Clarifies Position of Casting Controversy of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" Playbill, 2017: The Edward Albee Foundation: "Jewishness as Literary Device in Nabokov's Fiction": "Wrestling with a Lolita Opera and Losing" NYT, 2005: Rodion Schedrin on his 'Lolita' opera: Michael Walsh on Schedrin's Lolita opera:,9171,982502,00.html Cathy Marston 2015 Lolita ballet trailer (Denmark): Hiroko Mikami on Michael West's 2003 'Lolita' adaptation: Victor Sobchak's Lolita, 2003: Davide Bombana's Lolita ballet excerpt, 2003: Brian Cox as Humbert in Richard Nelson's 2009 one-man "Lolita": Humbert Humbert (Conjuring Nymphet), NYT 2009 (Michael Galante adaptation): John Harbison's "Darkbloom": Lolita: An Imagined Opera: Russian Ballet Excerpt "The Swimmer" from 2017: 'Lolita' by The Four Humors: "An Infamous 'Lolita' Musical Gets a Belated Broadway Debut" NYT 2019 (Emilly Maltby Production): Learn more about your ad-choices at

4: Dolores, Psychology, and Survivors
Dec 14 2020 101 mins  
Content warning: this episode contains discussion of child sex abuse and pedophilia. What can survivors of abuse take away from the experiences of Nabokov's Dolores Haze? It depends on who you talk to. This week, Jamie examines the popular psychologies of Freud and Kinsey that Dolly would have been surrounded by, and with two prominent psychologists -- Lucia Williams and Michael Lamb -- about the value Dolores's story has to students of psychology today. We also speak with Sarah Weinman about "The Real Lolita," survivors Alisson Wood ("Being Lolita") and Bindu Bansinath ("How Lolita Freed Me From My Own Humbert") about the role of Lolita in their own processing and healing from childhood trauma. This is a tough one. Thanks for being here. If you are seeking resources about sexual assault: If you are seeking resources about MAPs: Join our Discord: DISCUSSED IN THIS EPISODE: "Casting Aspersions" by Tashmica Torok: 'How Lolita Freed Me From My Own Humbert' by Bindu Bansinath: Being Lolita by Alisson Wood: The Real Lolita by Sarah Weinman: Still Intrigued with Lolita: Nabokov's Visionary Work on Childhood Abuse by Lucia Williams: The Mann Act and Boxer Jack Johnson: Infantile bisexuality and the 'complete oedipal complex': Freudian views on heterosexuality and homosexuality: Freud and LGBTQIA+ Issues: A 2020 Analysis: Anna Freud: Freud and the Seduction Theory by Jeffrey Masson: The Enduring, Pernicious Whiteness of True Crime by Elon Green: Alfred Kinsey: Liberator or Pervert? by Caleb Crain: Karen Horney and womb envy: Race and Racism in Psychoanalytic Thought: The Ghosts in Our Nursery by Beverly Stoute: Conversations on Psychoanalysis and Race: Beverly J. Stoute: Sokhna Fall on Nabokov's Lolita: Lolita in the Afterlife (essay collection coming in 2021): Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi: Learn more about your ad-choices at

3: How Did They Ever Make a Movie of Lolita? (1962)
Dec 07 2020 81 mins  
Well, they didn't. This week, Jamie dives into the backstory to Stanley Kubrick's 1962 adaptation of Lolita, interviews one of the world's foremost Kubrick scholars, examines Vladimir Nabokov's involvement and how the first Lolita, Sue Lyon, was treated on set and in media. [Trigger warning: this podcast contains discussion of child sex abuse, pedophillia and the plot of the story Lolita.] Nabokov's script for Lolita: James B. Harris allegations: James Fenwick's Stanley Kubrick Produces: Haley Mills and Lolita: Chasing Lolita by Graham Vickers: Lucia Wiliams: Lindsay Ellis's "The Whole Plate: Framing Megan Fox": Kubrick on Lolita as a love story: More Information on the Hays Code: Sue Lyon in 1962: Sue Lyon in the 1980s: Charlie Chaplin's history of CSA and abuse: Errol Flynn and child sex abuse: The poster for Baby Doll, 1956: Carroll Baker interview from 2019: Shelley Duvall and Stanley Kubrick: Learn more about your ad-choices at

2: Volodya Takes America
Nov 30 2020 70 mins  
Vladimir Nabokov is your favorite author? Name five of his short stories written in Berlin in the 1930s. This week we look into how the author of Lolita's attempts at writing around the book's themes pre-dated his masterwork by several decades, the endless saga of getting Lolita published, some of the story’s earliest critical misinterpretations and the life of one of the 20th century’s best-regarded authors. Jamie speaks with Nabokovian Dana Dragunoiu and Nabokov's all-time biographer Brian Boyd. Featuring the voices of Aziz Vora as Humbert Humbert, Robert Evans as Vladimir Nabokov, additional voice work from Anna Hossnieh, Shereen Lani-Younes, Grace Thomas, Isaac Taylor, and Miles Gray. Produced by Sophie Lichterman, Miles Gray, Beth-Anne Macaluso and Jack O'Brien. Editing by Isaac Taylor, additional editing by Ben Loftus. Written and hosted by Jamie Loftus. Join our Discord for more discussion! In this episode we talked about: Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov Nabokov in Russia by Brian Boyd Nabokov in America by Brian Boyd The Magician's Doubts by Michael Wood Nabokov’s Women: The Silent Sisterhood of textual Nomads, edited by Elena Rakhimova-Sommers Maurice Girodias (we didn't have time to cover him in depth here but the man is a piece of WORK): Early reviews of Lolita: The Showgirl Who Discovered Lolita by Sarah Weinman: Vladimir Nabokov and the Poetics of Liberalism by Dana Dragunoiu: The Enchanter by Vladimir Sirin (Nabokov) Still Intrigued with Lolita: Nabokov's Visionary Work on Child Sexual Abuse by Lucia Williams: Nabokov's Playboy Interview from 1964: Learn more about your ad-choices at

1: Dolores, Not Lolita
Nov 23 2020 66 mins  
Who is Dolores Haze? Since Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov was published in 1955, readers have formed strong opinions on the story’s narrator and his framing of the titular character. But Lolita and Dolores Haze are far from the same person. Jamie Loftus gets into her history with the book, and dives into the events of the book. Join our Discord for more discussion! Featuring the voices of Aziz Vora as Humbert Humbert, Robert Evans as Vladimir Nabokov, additional voice work from Anna Hossnieh, Shereen Lani-Younes, Grace Thomas, Isaac Taylor, and Miles Gray. Produced by Sophie Lichterman, Miles Gray, Beth-Anne Macaluso and Jack O'Brien. Editing by Isaac Taylor, additional editing by Ben Loftus. Written and hosted by Jamie Loftus. In this episode we talked about: Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket Lewis Carroll: The Mann Act: The Enchanted Hunters and the Hunted Enchanters: This interview with Nabokov from the Paris Review: Men Explain Lolita to Me: Reading Lolita in Tehran: Learn more about your ad-choices at

4.7 • 7 Ratings

suenoverde Jan 16 2021
This is a very well-argued and somehow entertaining essay on not just Lolita but the disgusting American phenomenon of culturally endorsed pedophilia. I've learned a lot so far. Thank you for making this podcast.

Adeptus Asperger Dec 20 2020
I vaguely remember Lolita (the book) as grim and unsettling. This podcast is a fascinating and unflinching look at what it is and means. Grim but important.

jplewa Dec 15 2020
Very interesting. I remember my friend in middle school being really into this book and I felt like I was missing out, since it was a book for "cool girls".

Talmerian Dec 14 2020
Excellent research and story telling. The voice work and editing make it a difficult listen. More of an important listen than an enjoyable one, mainly due to the increasingly odd vocal choices for readers. Sigmund Freud as some kind of southern gentleman? WTF!? He was Austrian and his voice has been recorded...Kinsey, an American, is given an upper class British accent, let alone the voice contributors who sound like they are unedited or just unprofessional.

The Stugots Nov 25 2020
Finally, a deep dive into the problematic literary masterpiece Lolita. Lolita is probably the most misunderstood novel of the 20th c. Thanks for bringing this topic out of the closet. Looking forward to each podcast.

Bourgeois_Z Nov 24 2020
Wow.... The first episode alone made me go pick up my copy of Nabokov's novel and voraciously and ferociously begin a re-read. The podcast I didn't know I needed.

valerious22 Nov 23 2020
Jamie Loftus has done it again, brilliant as ever