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The Rejection of Svidrigailov in Crime and Punishment

The Rejection of Svidrigailov in Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment Raskolnikov would reject Svidrigailov because he knows that this man has designs against his sister. Dounia has been his main concern for the past couple chapters-he hounds Svidrigailov not because he enjoys his company, but he worries endlessly about his intentions. Svidrigailov and Raskolnikov at the bar engage in a conversation about Dounia and the interactions of her and he at the house of Marfa Petrovna. Raskolnikov is eventually duped by the base Svid., and he lets him be after he has jumped on a carriage and is speeding down the road-he is not going to the Islands though, he is coming back and has a meeting scheduled with Dounia. Svidrigailov, like Porfiry, employs tacit and devious tactics. Raskolnikov realizes this, and he resents Svidrigailov for this. There is another very important reason why Raskolnikov hates Svid. As Hobbes pointed out, if a person knows that another man knows the truth about a lie he is telling, or is in the position to find out such information, he will subsequently hate that person no matter what previous relation they were in. This hate and dislike can be repressed, but even then it still has the ability to come out in a deluge of rejection.

Raskolnikov, so far, has been able to repress his anger towards Svidrigailov and also Porfiry. He does scream at Porfiry to either arrest him or let him be, but he is much less outwardly forceful with his anger. Does Svidrigailov represent Raskolnikov’s evil side? Does he embody the ideas and philosophies of Raskolnikov? Perhaps it is easy to say yes-to simplify this great work of a philosophy and psychological writing. It is much better to steer away from the trap though of simply saying that he is the representation of R.’s evil side. The story is much deeper than that. Svidrigailov molests, irks, and bothers young women who do not wish to be associated with him. He panders to their weakness and self-admittedly uses deception to win them for his own. This is not Raskolnikov. Raskolnikov is the man who conceives a theory-a theory that actually had the better of society as its aim-Svid. simply exists in a nihilistic atmosphere of vice and wanton behavior.

Resurrection of Lazarus in Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment

Resurrection of Lazarus in Crime and Punishment

In Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment, Raskalnikov undergoes a period of extreme psychological upheaval. By comparing this death and rebirth of Raskalnikov’s psyche to the story of the resurrection of Lazarus, Dostoevsky emphasizes not only the gravity of his crimes, but also the importance of acceptance of guilt.

From the moment when Raskalnikov murders the old woman, his personality begins to change drastically. Dostoevsky challenges the reader to understand the madness which ensues by first demonstrating that the ideas and convictions to which Raskalnikov clung died along with the women. While the reader struggles with this realization, Dostoevsky incorporates the Biblical legend of Lazarus as a symbolic mirror for Raskalnikov’s mind. By connecting the two, the reader encounters the foreshadowing of a rebirth of morals and beliefs, though what form this may assume remains cryptic. As references to Lazarus continue to occur, the feeling of parallelism increases in intensity. Just as Raskalnikov slowly struggled through madness, Lazarus lay dying of a terrible disease. When Lazarus eventually dies, Raskalnikov mimes this by teetering on the edge of insanity, the death of the mind. Eventually Sonya begins to pull Raskalnikov back to reality by relieving a portion of his guilt. As his Christ figure, she accomplishes this by providing the moral and spiritual sturdiness which Raskalnikov lost after his debasement during the murders. Sonya affects him not by active manipulation, but via her basic character, just as Christ personified his beliefs through the manner in which he lived his life. No matter what Raskalnikov says or does to her, she accepts it and looks to God to forgive him, just as Jesus does in the Bible. This eventually convinces Raskalnikov that what he did was in fact a crime and that he must repent for it and”seek atonement”.

Through this realization, Raskalnikov decides he must redeem himself not only in the eyes of the law, but in the eye of God as well. By foreswearing his old philosophy and accepting his guilt, Raskalnikov again mirrors Lazarus’s acceptance of Jesus as his savior. While Lazarus accepts his new life through his rebirth, Raskalnikov acknowledges his guilt and therefore allows his mind to begin life anew.

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