The Andy Warhol banana on the cover was not the picture of a banana, but the negation of a banana, and the nail-scratch violin of "The Black Angel's Death Song," with you as Bob Dylan, if Bob-Dylan-were-Donovan, was not pop at its most cynical, but pop at its most inimical.
What do L. Ron Hubbard, H.G. Wells, G.K. Chesterton, Lord Dunsany, Alice in Wonderland, M.C. Escher, John H. Conway, Roger Penrose and Oprah Winfrey have in common? The same thing as Isaac Asimov, Vladimir Nabokov, and Salvador Dali.
While it may seem tame by today's standards, D.H. Lawrence's classic tale of a gamekeeper and a Lady was so outrageous on the topics of sex and class that it wasn't allowed to be published legally in this country until 1959, 30 years after it first surfaced in Europe.
Some of the most quintessential depictions of the American land and people arise from a particular eye: the eye of the outsider, who can see the boundaries of Americanness invisible to the native-born.
What's key about communicating is the formation of meaning. And that doesn't happen on the page. It happens in the mind of the reader. That's who you have to care about, and that's where you do your work as a writer.
There is so much in ourselves and in others that we must take on faith. Memories, hopes, illusions, these are all bound up in perception. Nabokov shows us that what is "real" is partially made, partially known, and partially a blessed mystery.