Saturday, April 5, 2014

The ten best bad mothers in literature

Charlotte Runcie writes about arts and culture, particularly books, theatre, music and TV. One of her ten best bad mothers in literature, as shared at the Telegraph:
Charlotte Haze – Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

We only ever see Charlotte Haze through the eyes of Humbert Humbert, who shows her initially as a vaguely repulsive obstacle to Humbert's advances on the young Lolita, and then even more worthy of his disgust because of her own dislike of her daughter. Charlotte seems to realise that Lolita is competing for Humbert's affections, but that only makes Charlotte like her even less. Difficult to forgive.

Read about the other entries on the list.

Lolita appears on Kathryn Williams's list of fifteen notable works on lust, Boris Kachka's six favorite books list, Fiona Maazel's list of the ten worst fathers in books, Jennifer Gilmore's list of the ten worst mothers in books, Steven Amsterdam's list of five top books that have anxiety at their heart, John Banville's five best list of books on early love and infatuation, Kathryn Harrison's list of favorite books with parentless protagonists, Emily Temple's list of ten of the greatest kisses in literature, John Mullan's list of ten of the best lakes in literature, Dan Vyleta's top ten list of books in second languages, Rowan Somerville's top ten list of books of good sex in fiction, Henry Sutton's top ten list of unreliable narrators, Adam Leith Gollner's top ten list of fruit scenes in literature, Laura Hird's literary top ten list, Monica Ali's ten favorite books list, Laura Lippman's 5 most important books list, Mohsin Hamid's 10 favorite books list, and Dani Shapiro's 10 favorite books list. It is Lena Dunham's favorite book.

Also see:'s 2010 list of the ten worst mothers in fiction.

--Marshal Zeringue