The controversial and well-known Lolita by Nabokov forces us to address taboo topics and confusing realities in a way that only art can do. How do relationships often represent unrealistic ideals? Despite the novel’s taboo subject matter, can it teach us something about the dynamics of normal relationships? How do different art forms allow us to address immoral behaviors, social faux-pas, or the negative features of our human condition productively?
All human societies are well acquainted with unnecessary violence — but can we change this? Are the conditions under which humans live such that unnecessary violence is an integral feature of our human nature? At what level (e.g. individual, societal, national) do changes need to take place to rectify our fatal human flaw of pathological violence?
DISCLAIMER: The following artworks feature violence and sexual content.
What does the continued relevance of vampire stories say about humans’ natural inclination to ostracize the ‘other?’ How have modern vampire tales changed this narrative? Could this evolution of thought be representative of an evolved human condition? What do vampire tales say about our fear of the dead, or mass hysteria associated with things we do not understand?
Where do we derive meaning for our existence and how do we find happiness? Can souls be nourished like bodies? If the world is a window, what do we see when we look in as we pass it by?
Can extreme religious behavior or ideation be considered an addiction in the same way drug and substance abuse is? How can this categorization affect the way we understand mental health issues?
Can understanding the political trauma of the past help to contextualize the present?
What are the political ramifications of the different ways in which ideas are transferred from one culture to another?
How does religious violence occur? How do different ideologies justify violence? What is it about religious violence that seems to make it more violent?
Is religion inherently more violent than other ideologies? Do all ideologies have the propensity for violence?
At what point does belief, political ideology, and good intentions prevent us from achieving the goals we set for ourselves?