The world saw a large number of political and social surprises inwith totally unexpected events becoming reality.
Each of these works is famous for its psychological profundity, and, indeed, Dostoyevsky is commonly regarded as one of the greatest psychologists in the history of literature.
He specialized in the analysis of pathological states of mind that lead to insanity, murder, and suicide and in the exploration of the emotions of humiliation, self-destruction, tyrannical domination, and murderous rage.
Finally, these novels broke new ground with their experiments in literary form. Indeed, he frequently capitalized on his legend by drawing on the highly dramatic incidents of his life in creating his greatest characters. Even so, some events in his life have remained clouded in mystery, and careless speculations have unfortunately gained the status of fact.
Unlike many other Russian writers of the first part of the 19th century, Dostoyevsky was not born into the landed gentry. He often stressed the difference between his own background and that of Leo Tolstoy or Ivan Turgenev and the effect of that difference on his work.
First, Dostoyevsky was always in need of money and had to hurry his works into publication. Although he complained that writing against a deadline prevented him from achieving his full literary powers, it is equally possible that his frenzied style of composition lent his novels an energy that has remained part of their appeal.
By contrast, his mother, a cultured woman from a merchant family, was kindly and indulgent. He bought an estate inand so young Fyodor spent the summer months in the country. Until Dostoyevsky was educated at home, before being sent to a day school and then to a boarding school.
Petersburga career as a military engineer having been marked out for him by his father. Dostoyevsky was evidently unsuited for such an occupation. He and his older brother Mikhail, who remained his close friend and became his collaborator in publishing journals, were entranced with literature from a young age.
Not long after completing his degree and becoming a sublieutenant, Dostoyevsky resigned his commission to commence a hazardous career as a writer living off his pen.
Dostoyevsky did not have to toil long in obscurity. Even though it was 4: Later that day, Nekrasov brought Poor Folk to Belinsky. Makar Devushkin, a poor copying clerk who can afford to live only in a corner of a dirty kitchen, exchanges letters with a young and poor girl, Varvara Dobrosyolova.
Her letters reveal that she has already been procured once for a wealthy and worthless man, whom, at the end of the novel, she agrees to marry. The novel is remarkable for its descriptions of the psychological rather than just material effects of poverty.
Dostoyevsky transformed the techniques Nikolay Gogol used in The Overcoatthe celebrated story of a poor copying clerk. The hero of this novella, Golyadkin, begets a double of himself, who mocks him and usurps his place.
Always prone to nervous illness, Dostoyevsky suffered from depression.
Political activity and arrest In Dostoyevsky began to participate in the Petrashevsky Circle, a group of intellectuals who discussed utopian socialism. He eventually joined a related, secret group devoted to revolution and illegal propaganda.
It appears that Dostoyevsky did not sympathize as others did with egalitarian communism and terrorism but was motivated by his strong disapproval of serfdom. On April 23,he and the other members of the Petrashevsky Circle were arrested.
Dostoyevsky spent eight months in prison until, on December 22, the prisoners were led without warning to the Semyonovsky Square.
There a sentence of death by firing squad was pronounced, last rites were offered, and three prisoners were led out to be shot first. At the last possible moment, the guns were lowered and a messenger arrived with the information that the tsar had deigned to spare their lives.Fyodor Dostoyevsky: Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Russian novelist and short-story writer whose psychological penetration into the darkest recesses of the human heart, together with his unsurpassed moments of illumination, had an immense influence on 20th-century fiction.
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