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Literature Study GuidesLolitaPart 2 Chapters 9 10 Summary

Lolita | Study Guide

Vladimir Nabokov

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Lolita | Part 2, Chapters 9–10 | Summary



Chapter 9

Humbert is disappointed in Lolita's girlfriends though he is interested in Eva Rosen, "a displaced little person from France" to whom he speaks in French. He worries about what "Dolores Haze" might have told Mona Dahl, who is an intelligent girl and interested in drama. Though he tries he cannot get Mona Dahl to tell him anything about Lolita's life in school.

Chapter 10

Humbert tells us that he did not always play the role of father but instead crawled on his knees to Lolita, trying to bury his face in her skirt as she studied. She pulled back from him and asked him to leave her alone.


Humbert's discussion of Lolita's friends, a "bevy of page girls, consolation prize nymphets" that he wanted to have around his "aging little mistress" is both frightening to Humbert and disgusting to the reader. Humbert's distance from his "daughter" Lolita is becoming more evident, and his cynical worldview shows when he wonders whether Lolita might be "pimping" Mona to him. The fact that not many of Lolita's friends stay friends with her for long suggests that living with Humbert has made Lolita less than attractive to girls from normal families.

Humbert describes his passionate craving for sex with Lolita and her exasperation with him. His sudden description of his undignified lust shows a vulnerable side of Humbert that his preening, defensive, condescending, and literary language rarely reveals.

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