Pages: 1 ... 4 5 [6] 7 8   Go Down

Author Topic: The Lolita Affair  (Read 101167 times)

josayeruk

  • Guest
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #100 on: May 17, 2007, 04:56:01 am »

Quote
God! Some of you guys are a bunch of rednecks. Nabakov's novel, 'Lolita' was considered a literary masterpiece, as I recall. It was a long time ago since I read it, but even now after all this time I think I can vaguely remember verbatim a passage, or part of it, or the gist of it.

"Lolita! The tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to slowly pronounce ... Lo..li..ta."  or something close to that.

Wow! Some of you guys sure have a lot of hang-ups.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118128\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Ray its got nothing to do with the book.

It is the use of a phrase which is now related to child porn being used in a photograph in a discompasionate way.  Thats it.
Logged

Andy Rowe

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #101 on: May 17, 2007, 05:03:17 am »

Like many others on this topic, I to raised an eyebrow or two at the title of the photograph. I had a feeling that it would provoke such a response.
A similar thing happened to me a while ago but not on the same scale. I called someone an idiot when commenting on a superb photograph on a well known critique website. The photo had a large amount of critiques which were all in praise of the said photo, apart from one. I felt that this person was only being negative to gain attention to himself. I took exception to this and called him an idiot in my posting.
This caused a large debate on the websites forum which basically told me, in no uncertain terms that I was wrong to call someone an idiot. They were right. I didn't have the right to call anyone anything. After giving it a lot of thought I decided to apologise to the member that I had verbally abused and removed the offending remark. Guess what? The debate ended almost immediately.
My point to this posting is that I and a lot of other people believe the title to be inappropriate. Not the photograph. Surely Michael Reichmann does not want this to go on and on. By removing the title and admitting that it was inappropriate would, I am sure, diffuse the situation. Yes, we all have the right to free speech but in this rapidly changing world we do have to choose this speech very carefully. Especially when the whole world can see it.
Michael states that the comments are 20/1 in his favour. Reading a lot of the comments on this forum I would say that the ratio is a lot less than he thinks. Despite all of this, I still think that this site (Luminous Landscape) is one of the best of its type on the internet.
Logged

sinclsw007

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 6
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #102 on: May 17, 2007, 05:07:50 am »

People keep changing this argument every time they see that they are losing it (pun intended).

Since when did extending freedom of expression for artists exlcude extending that same freedom to anyone who wishes to comment on art?  Art will die not when when people start criticising but when they stop caring about it enough to comment.

And still the comments come - if you are concerned about the use of a title loaded with potential for misunderstanding and controversy in one of its levels of meaning, you get accused of having a hang-up about a clearly innocent picture (or worse, in ray's case).

This could all have been knocked on the head right at the start; all Michael had to do was sya "I know perfectly well what Lolita means and I intended it to be provocative, as is my right and duty as an artist - but not as provocative as it turned out", and left it there, there is nowhere this discussion could have gone.  Instead we get the frankly ludicrous attempt to deny one of Lolita's plain meanings, and more self-serving special pleading and amateur psychology than anyone should be exposed to.
Logged

Ray

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10348
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #103 on: May 17, 2007, 05:08:38 am »

Quote
Ray its got nothing to do with the book.

It is the use of a phrase which is now related to child porn being used in a photograph in a discompasionate way.  Thats it.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118129\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I've got no experience of child porn. I don't know any of the catch phrases or turn-on phrases, whatever you want to call them. I've got no idea if the term 'Lolita' is frequently used in connection with child porn as I'm sure Michael hasn't either.

If this is the objection that the moral police have, who have viewed lots of child pornography and seen frequent references to "Lolita", then say so.

Let's not beat about the bush.
Logged

josayeruk

  • Guest
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #104 on: May 17, 2007, 05:15:45 am »

Quote
I've got no experience of child porn. I don't know any of the catch phrases or turn-on phrases, whatever you want to call them. I've got no idea if the term 'Lolita' is frequently used in connection with child porn as I'm sure Michael hasn't either.

If this is the objection that the moral police have, who have viewed lots of child pornography and seen frequent references to "Lolita", then say so.

Let's not beat about the bush.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118133\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Jeez Ray, you can't label us all child pornographers because we are aware of the meaning of a word in the English language???

As MR is so keen to quote Wikipedia he need only have read to the second line...

'In the marketing of pornography, "lolita" is used to refer to any attractive woman who has only recently reached, or is still younger than, the age of consent, or sometimes to refer to women who only appear to be younger than the age of consent.'

So MR clearly did know.

Therefore the title isn't suitable to describe any kid.... Period.
Logged

paulnorheim

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 51
    • don`t have
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #105 on: May 17, 2007, 05:18:31 am »

ANY CLEAR MINDS OUT THERE?

The key issues here, as I see it, are:
 
1) Is it OK to take a picture in a different cultural setting then your own, without talking to the one you make a portrait of, then move on and, finally, publish it without context, with a title that may happen to coincide with reality, or is a subjectiv interpretation, or a sole product of the imagination of the photographer?
 
2) Is it the privilege of the photographer to say: "this is art, and not a document", when you point the lens in the direction of an existing girl (or boy, or old man or woman - any person) with a life that you don`t know anything about?
 
3) If it`s "art" (and the quality of the actual picture here is beyond the point), does that exclude the "documentary" aspect?
 
4) If a photographer take pictures of "real people", does this documentary aspect exclude the "art" aspect?

There`s a lot to say about this, and in this context I find it quite interesting that Michael Reichmann several times has published articles about "art" (from Alain Briot and others) which states (if I remember correctly) that art is basically a product of the artists "imagination" or "vision" or "feeling" – statements that i find a bit simplistic (but perhaps it is in accordance with Michael Reichmanns view?)
   Personally I find the "vision-thing" rather vague and fluffy, if you isolate it from anything else then the "artist"`s imagination; it`s an ideology with some unintended implications, which becomes more evident when your medium is photography.

There are no simple answers to the questions above; you can`t solve them just by discussing them for a while in a café or on the web. However, I think this thread could be useful, and perhaps clarifying, if people discussed the issues at stake.

Instead a lot of people get very personal, accusing MR for labeling an innocent girl, and in the next sentences labeling MR with caracteristics worse then any of the possible connotations implicit in the word "Lolita" – falling into the same trap as they´ve just accused him of falling into.
Their moral indignation and outrage should be directed toward something bigger.

I guess MR could have thought a little harder, before he made that title. "Provocative" – yes, perhaps. But who did it provoke?
   The context (and contextlessness) in this case make it too easy for people to say that here we have a classical example of a middleaged, wealthy, upper middle class Western`er projecting his sex-obsessed, colonising mind on an innocent girl. The case is too perfect to be true. Whole departments of universities live on such simplistic analysis, which, first being half true, applied to reality, only serve to confirm what they allready knew.
   
And then the moral outrage, occasionally followed by violent threats.
   Obviously, the issue has ethical, as well as political and cultural implications. But I´m not impressed by people blaming the photographer for verbal violence in one sentence, threatening the photographer with physical violence in the next.
   
Again: the questions are not easy to answer. If you for example answer "no" to the first question, then street photography would be impossible – except, perhaps, if you only take pictures of your neighbours.
   
Since the "Lolita-affair" has become a big deal, we need more clear thinking, and less passion.

(And, by the way: the word "Lolita" has a lot of connotations. It refers to the novel, as well as a handful of other things, since this name has got its own life outside the novel. Nobody can claim that "Lolita" means only one thing, be it what Nabokov said, the pornographic connotation, prostitution, or whatever.)

Paul
« Last Edit: May 17, 2007, 05:43:00 am by paulnorheim »
Logged
paul norheim

PeterLange

  • Guest
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #106 on: May 17, 2007, 05:33:00 am »

Quote
if this girl lived in the states, her parents could sue.

Could someone around here comment on the legal aspects ?

I’m certainly not an expert for US or Canadian law, but thought it can be very strict in this regard.  Wouldn’t an US-based publication of such a portrait of an presumable underage person mandatory require the written consent of the parents even though it was captured in another country?

Maybe Michael could just post the contact details of Lolita’s parents. Let’s see if a US/CAN lawyer gets in touch with them in order to plead their case.  IF I remember a former robgalbraith-discussion correctly, a commercial photographer who was just taking some shots of a public event got into heavy troubles because he was accused for doing such kind of „selective“ photography.

No, I’m certainly not a moralist . However, I’m also living in another country and I certainly wouldn’t appreciate to see any (foreign) “art” photographer making unasked shots of my children.  As for the shooting itself, I’m quite sure that I would have any right to stop this by reasonable means. As for the publication, the legal home of the introducing corporation such as luminous-landscape should define the applicable law. IMHO.

Peter

--
« Last Edit: May 17, 2007, 06:11:05 am by PeterLange »
Logged

Ray

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10348
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #107 on: May 17, 2007, 05:33:16 am »

Quote
.. or sometimes to refer to women who only appear to be younger than the age of consent.'

So MR clearly did know.

Therefore the title isn't suitable to describe any kid.... Period.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118135\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

As I've said before, in my view this girl appears to be younger than she really is, therefore the title attached to this image is appropriate.

Since no-one here appears to know the actual age of this young lady, the expressions of outrage are farcical and ignorant.
Logged

Ray

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10348
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #108 on: May 17, 2007, 05:39:23 am »

Quote
ANY CLEAR MINDS OUT THERE?

The key issues here, as I see it, are:
 
1) Is it OK to take a picture in a different cultural setting then your own, without talking to the one you make a portrait of, then move on and, finally, publish it without context, with a title that may happen to coincide with reality, or is a subjectiv interpretation, or a sole product of the imagination of the photographer?
 
2) Is it the privilege of the photographer to say: this is art, and not a document, when you point the lens in the direction of an existing girl (or boy, or old man or woman - any person) with a life that you don`t know anything about?
 
3) If it`s "art" (and the quality of the actual picture here is beyond the point), does that exclude the "documentary" aspect?
 
4) If a photographer take pictures of "real people", does this documentary aspect exclude the art aspect?

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118136\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

You forgot the question, 'do you want to tie yourself up in rules and regulations so no expression is possible without a batallion of lawyers offering advice?'
Logged

josayeruk

  • Guest
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #109 on: May 17, 2007, 05:40:32 am »

I hope the attendees were not in the Peruvian part of the Amazon, as in that particular country the term Lolita simply means a prostitute of any age.
Logged

paulnorheim

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 51
    • don`t have
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #110 on: May 17, 2007, 05:56:27 am »

Quote
You forgot the question, 'do you want to tie yourself up in rules and regulations so no expression is possible without a batallion of lawyers offering advice?'
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118140\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Ray,

I hinted at that later on, when I said:
"Again: the questions are not easy to answer. If you for example answer "no" to the first question, then street photography would be impossible – except, perhaps, if you only take pictures of your neighbours."

And that wouldn`t create a better world for anybody.
Given the current moralistic atmosphere in parts of the Western world, I fear a future where we only see pictures of family members, flowers and cats.

Paul
« Last Edit: May 17, 2007, 05:57:49 am by paulnorheim »
Logged
paul norheim

Ray

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10348
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #111 on: May 17, 2007, 05:57:15 am »

Quote
I hope the attendees were not in the Peruvian part of the Amazon, as in that particular country the term Lolita simply means a prostitute of any age.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118141\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Oops! Well there you are then. You can't blame someone for not being aware of all the connotations worldwide a particular word may have. This is a photographic forum, not a linguistic forum.

Nor can you expect someone to cater to all the peculiar sensitivities that different cultures might have on a whole range of issues. If we did that, all women in the West would be wearing chadars and veils to cover their face because Muslims object to the sight of bare flesh, in public.

..object to the sight of bare female flesh, that is, in public. I've no idea what goes on in private, in the Muslim world.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2007, 06:00:20 am by Ray »
Logged

josayeruk

  • Guest
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #112 on: May 17, 2007, 06:16:46 am »

Quote
..object to the sight of bare female flesh, that is, in public. I've no idea what goes on in private, in the Muslim world.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118146\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I don't see the point of this comment?
Logged

Ray

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 10348
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #113 on: May 17, 2007, 06:24:03 am »

Quote
Ray, I think you need a hobby, dude. How's about photography?

It's very rewarding and much more challenging than your brand of psychology.

: )
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118118\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

You know, Pete, I think you might be right. Yes. Photography appeals to me. I think I'll take it up. Maybe I'll specialise in nudes (female). Yes. That appeals to me. I think I might have a penchant there   .
Logged

KSH

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 29
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #114 on: May 17, 2007, 06:31:39 am »

Quote
As I've said before, in my view this girl appears to be younger than she really is, therefore the title attached to this image is appropriate.

Since no-one here appears to know the actual age of this young lady, the expressions of outrage are farcical and ignorant.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118138\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Ray,

In my view this is the question exactly. As I have stated before, if I KNEW this girl to be of age, I wouldn't mind. I did not even mind the title so much although I kind of expected something like this. What I do object to is Michael's OWN interpretation of this being a "clearly sexually provocative young woman" which, to me, makes it problematic.

And, Ray, it cannot be in the interest of free expression to short-fuse any discussion of a picture and its interpretation by calling everyone with a dissenting opinion a censor of art or a closet pedophile or both.

Karsten
Logged

BlasR

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 760
    • http://BMRWorldPhotos.com
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #115 on: May 17, 2007, 06:39:22 am »

My sister name is LOLITA,  any of you have problem with that? would you like to take a photo of her and name the photo LOLITA?
She have no problem with that

BlasR
Logged
BlasR
  [url=http://www.BMRWORLDPHOTOS.CO

michael

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5084
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #116 on: May 17, 2007, 07:44:16 am »

There are far too many comments here for me to reply to, but "child pronographer". Really – do we really have to add such incendiary fuel to the fire? What planet do some of you live on?

Legal recourse? Groan. Let me guess which country that person is from!

I'm done. I'll leave the topic open (otherwise I'll be accused of censorship (or witchcraft, or some other heneous crime)), but I likely won't read any more of it. Too depressing.

No – I won't retract the title. No I don't regret my use of the word, because what I meant by it is not necessarily what YOU may think it means or want it to mean.

I'm moving on. If this topic still puts a burr under your saddle then debate away. Please just keep it somewhat civil.

Oh yes, and remember that this site is about photography. To debate morals, politics, religion, semiotics please carry on elsewhere.

Michael
« Last Edit: May 17, 2007, 07:45:03 am by michael »
Logged

Slough

  • Guest
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #117 on: May 17, 2007, 08:19:15 am »

Quote
I've got no experience of child porn. I don't know any of the catch phrases or turn-on phrases, whatever you want to call them. I've got no idea if the term 'Lolita' is frequently used in connection with child porn as I'm sure Michael hasn't either.

If this is the objection that the moral police have, who have viewed lots of child pornography and seen frequent references to "Lolita", then say so.

Let's not beat about the bush.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118133\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Maybe that is the problem. Those of use who have never come across child porn (so to speak) were not aware that Lolita is used in that context. Perhaps this is all about the mind of the beholder. It is a perfectly innocent image. (I do disagree with MR's interpretation, but I accept that this is subjective.)

Those who object would do better to target the real purveyors of filth and corruption, and not create a straw man to satiate their own self righteousness.

This is turning out to be a proper little storm in a film canister.
Logged

michael

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 5084
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #118 on: May 17, 2007, 08:46:31 am »

One more comment....

I received an email this morning from an academic who went into some detail about how Lolita has become a word in the pedophile underground for their "prey". (As some others here have recently noted).

That indeed seems to be the core of the issue. I was (and am) totally unware of that usage. My mental framework for the word is the 1954 Nabokov novel (which I'm old enough to have read when it was new), and that's how I used it. A sexually provocative young girl/woman.

So it seems that this is primerily about language and the way in which words change. We no longer says black or negro, we say African American (though not in Canada). We no longer say Indian, we say Native American (though not in Canada). We no longer say Oriental, we say Asian, though the train is still the Orient Express and we buy oriental carpets.

Words change. If I am guilty of anything, apparently in this case it's not keeping up with underground pedophile jargon.

Michael
« Last Edit: May 17, 2007, 08:48:38 am by michael »
Logged

ecemfjm

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 34
    • http://www.manuelfernando.es
The Lolita Affair
« Reply #119 on: May 17, 2007, 09:34:13 am »

Quote
One more comment....

I received an email this morning from an academic who went into some detail about how Lolita has become a word in the pedophile underground for their "prey". (As some others here have recently noted).

That indeed seems to be the core of the issue. I was (and am) totally unware of that usage. My mental framework for the word is the 1954 Nabokov novel (which I'm old enough to have read when it was new), and that's how I used it. A sexually provocative young girl/woman.

So it seems that this is primerily about language and the way in which words change. We no longer says black or negro, we say African American (though not in Canada). We no longer say Indian, we say Native American (though not in Canada). We no longer say Oriental, we say Asian, though the train is still the Orient Express and we buy oriental carpets.

Words change. If I am guilty of anything, apparently in this case it's not keeping up with underground pedophile jargon.

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=118167\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

May be you do not know that Lolita is a rather common first name for girls here in Spain. Lolita is an affective diminutive of Dolores. Since Dolores, as I said, is a rather common name, when mother and daughter are called the same, colloquially the daughter is called Lolita, since she is the little one of the family. It happens with many other names. It is the same as Robert and Bob or Bobby. And it started centuries ago, well before the Nabokov novel.

So when I saw the picture, I had no real concern about it. We are exposed to the word almost daily, with a very normal meaning. I realise that others may have been exposed to the word in other contexts or meanings.

But I think there are lots os words or names that we normally use and that, in some circles may mean a very different things. Shall we stop using them? Who is going to determine which words can we use or cannot be used, and in which context or with which criteria?

I do not want to be forced not to use a word or name I consider OK just because in other places or circles mean a different thing. What a Mexican person would think if I say 'Voy a coger a mi hija'? Perfect OK in Spain.

Regards

Manuel
Logged
Pages: 1 ... 4 5 [6] 7 8   Go Up