Incest in Thackeray's Vanity Fair, Nabokov's Lolita and Allan Poe's Annabel Lee In modern literature there are many examples of incest. Incest is presented in the plots of many books. Of course it is not in its classical form as it is in Oedipus legend. The form is changed but incest as such can be recognized . Here are two excerpts to display the latter. One is from Nabokov's Lolita, the other is from Thackeray's Vanity Fair.
" I had thought that months, perhaps years, would escape before I dared to reveal myself to Dolores Haze; but by 6 she was wide awake, and by 6.15 we were technically lovers. I am going to tell you something very strange: it was she who seduced me." Her age ia twelve.
" Rebecca Sharp never had been a girl, she said; she had been a woman since she was eight years old ..."
According to Freud the problem of incest is a subconscious one. Incest is always desired subconsciously. Its prohibition saves man from two aspirations: to kill the father and marry the mother. A triangle father-mother-child is brought out. This triangle can be used to show the transformations which in the classical Oedipus legend undergoes in modern writings. In the Greek myth Oedipus kills his father and marries his mother. I avoid mentioning the circumstances deliberately because I concentrate on the triangle father-mother-child, which is the classical form under which incest appears. In the above mentioned literary works the classical triangle has undergone two changes. First, instead of son we have daughter. Second the mothers of the girls are dead. So the triangle is reduced to the lineal connection father-daughter.
According to L. Stros incest does not always depend on the real, genetic kind-ship; it also depends on the social...