Monday, January 16, 2006
06.04 Crime And Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Crime And Punishment (1866) by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
There is probably not a lot I could write about this book that has not been said ad nauseum and I expect that many of you lib-arts types have read this in school. I had a tough time reading the first half of the novel but eventually you have to give in his insane writing style.
The story, while straightforward, is deeply complex and explores many issues of socialism, athiesm, family, sanity and morality to name a few. Raskolnikov is a young student living a destitute life in St. Petersburg. He concieves and executes a haphazard murder near the beginning of the story which seems to cause his mind to snap. His delerium seems to be caused by illness and yet he puts forth a thesis of justification for what he has done. He constantly pushes the boundaries of friendship with his friend Razumikhin, with his mother and sister when they come to see him and with the police.
His paranoia manifests itself constantly and he always seems to be acting irrationally. This behavior, it's internal dialogue and consequences comprise the bulk of the text. I wish I had a better background in existentialism.
It is an amazing thing for a novel, any novel, to be around for nearly 250 years. The world that Dostoyevsky lived in then was one which was entirely different from the one we exist in now. Nevertheless, his book is well considered and retains a wealth of themes that are relevant even in modern society. A worthwhile read.
Posted by Jason L