Crime And Punishment Parts 5, 6 And Epilogue

1532 words - 7 pages

1. Dostoevsky uses Lebezyatnikov as another way to talk about his own opinion on the ideas of such “progressives” (376). His argument against the ideas of progressives is intensified with Lebezyatnikov because his actions don’t seem to be congruent with his stances. Lebezyatnikov’s treatment of Katerina Ivanovna and Sonya do not comply with his ideas of free love and the equality of women. Dostoevsky does not agree with the progressive “‘younger generation’” (378) as he characterizes Lebezyatnikov as belonging to “[a] varied legion of semi-literate half wits”(378). Clearly Dostoevsky is not fond of these people. Progressive ideas can be beneficial when actually acted upon. Perhaps he is not ...view middle of the document...

3. He admits that he “wanted to become a Napoleon” (428). As he explains his theory to her she is horrified exclaiming that he has “turned away from God”. Raskolnikov insists that he knows “perfectly well that the devil is leading [him] on” (432). This is the first time he actually talks openly about his desire to test whether or not he is extraordinary. His cockiness is directly contrasting to his result. He arrogantly talks about how he realized he “had no right to power” (432). In realizing that his in no way extraordinary and he has “ruined”(432) himself he still manages to be overconfident and condescending.

4. Svid is once again seen as an extention of Rodya’s mind. He consistently speaks Raskolnikov’s thoughts. Clearly, Svidrigailov understands Rodya far better than Rodya understands him. He explains Raskolnikov’s own behavior to him saying "You give yourself away too much, Rodya”(481). According to Svidrigailov, "disease"(482) is another way of saying anything "that goes beyond measure," i.e. extremes. Rodya is clearly ill both physically and mentally, however this description of disease presents a further aspect to his illness. His split self, represents two extremes of compassionate magnanimity and, heartless rationalism it creates a disease of inner warfare. Svidrigailov could represent a future Raskolnikov, if he continues down a path of crime. Not only does Dostoevsky use him to parallel Raskolnikov there is also social commentary via Svidrigailov. "Damn it!” He cries. “The people are drinking, the educated youth are burning themselves up in idleness, in unrealizable dreams and fancies, crippling themselves with theories . . ." (493). It’s interesting how Dostoevsky thought that has such powerful criticisms coming from such a contemptible character. In addition, it serves to exemplify the strange intricacy of Svidrigailov, one moment he is evil and the next he becomes a compassionate caring person. In him we see the true punishment. As someone who knows the difference between good and evil, he intently chose evil and as a result is really has sinned.
5. Raskolnikov is the only other character whose consciousness is described in the same amount of depth as Svidrigailov. This further emphasizes the parallels between the two of them. In the dream the little girl looks at him, and pretends to be asleep, just like how Rodya did when he first visited him; this show some unchildlike cunning on her part. As the girl losing her “childish face”(521) and gaining the “face of a French whore”(521) the idea is presented that the dream may represent that anything he touches that is innocent turns to ruin. No matter how much good he tries to do his sins always come back to haunt him. He envisions a young teenage girl who has committed suicide by drowning herself. "Svidrigailov knew the girl," (519) and knew that she had killed herself after being taken advantage of sexually. Water has been seen before as a purifying element in...

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