Edmund White The Burning Library “Nabokov: Beyond Parody”
Whereas some Russian Formalists […] argued that parody is a way of disowning the past in an act of literary warfare, in Nabokov’s case we see that parody can be the fondest tribute, the deepest embrace, the invention of a tradition against which one’s own originality can be discerned, a payment of past debts in order to accrue future capital.
George Painter in his biography of Proust in the chapter “Purification through Parody” presents a similar function for parody albeit inflected towards a different sentiment:
There comes a time in the ascent of a great writer when, for the sake of his own future work, he must cease to admire even his greatest predecessors from a position of inferiority. Proust was now reaching the heights from which other summits appeared level with or lower than his own. His parodies were an antidote against the toxins of admiration.
Note: an antidote against the toxins not necessarily against the admiration.
And so for day 256