They exchange some heated words and Svidrigailov threatens to call the Dunya's relationship with Svidrigailov clearly has been much closer. Character List · Raskolnikov · Sonya · Dunya · Svidrigailov Pulcheria Alexandrovna and Dunya are grief-stricken at Raskolnikov's condition, but he At first, Razumikhin frightens them with his intensity, but they soon both trust him. illness may be a comment on the connection between a criminal mindset and madness. Svidrigailov immediately addresses his relationship with Dunya, senses that Svidrigailov is a true nihilist, or a man who places trust in no.
He sacrifices his wife for his infatuation with Dunia. He claims that he loves her, but does nothing but hurt her. He constantly lies to everyone in order to protect himself. But he is clearly capable of selflessness. Most importantly, are his motives. Everything he does regarding Dunia, no matter how despicable, is because he truly does love her, which in my mind, makes his actions at least somewhat less reprehensible. His actions are completely misguided, but his feeling are pure.
If there were any doubt left as to how much he values himself at the end, he ends his own life by shooting himself.
Luzhin, while his actions may be less damaging, is clearly the more selfish of the characters. Everything he does is to better himself and his image.
In the first scene in which he appears he is wearing what seems to be a freshly bought outfit and is acting with a fake sense of sophistication. He is drawn to Dunia not by love, but by his desire to improve his image by taking on a helpless woman as his wife whom he will have complete control over.
He then displays his cheapness by putting Dunia and her mother up in a cheap apartment, and forcing them to take out a loan for the trip. He even admits his selfishness when he says he would never tear half his coat in half for a neighbor, because then they would both be half naked.
Brett Basarab April 13th, 8: Her devout religious faith and the terrible sacrifices she has made for her family say much in favor of her character.
However, what is most important in the novel is the role she plays in relation to Raskolnikov.
She acts as both his conscience and his redeemer; after Raskolnikov confesses to her, she convinces him that he must accept his fate as a murderer and begin to repent. Ultimately, Sonia sets Raskolnikov on the path to redemption. As people stand around jeering at him, he is unable to utter the words.
Eventually, Raskolnikov tries to make his confession final at the police station, but even there, he cannot say the fateful words to Ilya Petrovitch.
Finally, Raskolnikov is overcome as he charges back into the police station and shouts out his confession. Only through her was he able to confess to the killings, accept that he did wrong, and thereby take the first step to redemption.
Sonia brings Raskolnikov back to earth: Patrick O'Neill April 13th, However, I have a slightly different take on the events. True, it is clear as day that her external environment utterly destroyed her, but I think in all her suffering, what may have initially been a search for dignity turned into this hysterical pride that the narrator keeps mentioning. Concerning this subject, however, I do not under any circumstances think that the reader should view her in the same light as Raskolnikov as his own actions drove him to insanity whereas although one might be able to somewhat argue the same for Katerina Ivanova, I personally do not believe her to be at all at fault, as life itself simply dealt her poor cards without end.
In my opinion, she really had no say in the matter from the beginning and in this sense is nonetheless deserving of pity, which the narrator does not give. The dynamic between the two characters is a very weird one, which ultimately shed light on other philosophical points for me. Perhaps it is because she too is intertwined and shares part in this miserable situation. By way of her prostitution, she is in a sense bearing a cross for her family, but it does not seem to meet with too much success.
On the subject of Raskolnikov, however, her religious sentiments and thoughts seem to help set him on the path towards redemption. In this regard, I think Dostoevsky is clearly advocating a turn towards God instead of a turn away from Him, in this case by means of prostitution and trying to communicate to the reader the importance of faith in redeeming oneself from the suffering life has to offer.
Zachary Harris April 13th, Porfiry has no real evidence that Raskolnikov committed the murder. He suspects Raskolnikov early in the novel based upon the fact that he becomes ill right after the murder. He becomes certain of his guilt when he is told by by a witness that Raskolnikov in a crazed state came to the apartment of the old woman asking the workers there about the blood that had been spilt there before and then asking to be taken to the police department. While these facts certainly do allow one to be very suspicious of Raskolnikov, they do should not really make one certain that he committed the murder as he was in a crazed state from his illness when he visited the apartment.
When Porfiry interrogates Raskolnikov, he uses incredible psychological mind games to attempt to extract a confession from him.
He never outright accuses him of committing the murder in fact he avoids the question when Raskolnikov demands to know if Porfiry thinks he committed the murderbut acts in such a manner towards Raskolnikov that encourages him to completely break down in a way that a guiltless person would not.
He at first acts very calm discussing completely unrelated topics with Raskolnikov, which causes Raskolnikov to become uneasy. He then discusses the way in which he conducts his investigations or at least the way he pretends torevealing that he does not accuse those he suspects right away but lets them be paranoid for a while thus revealing through their bizarre behavior that they are guilty of the crime.
Is there not enough air? Shall I open a window? While he does not have evidence that Raskolnikov committed the murder, he believes that he can prove it and force a confession from him because he knows what a murder will act like.
19th Century Russian Literature » Crime and Slime
He even is capable of pinning down which type of crazed behavior is show by a murderer. He must only release Raskolnikov from the police station because of protocol as Nikolai confesses to the murder while Raskolnikov is in the room. Reason has no power to prevent one from feeling wretched and acting guilty if one has committed a murder, and as Sonya shows, the only cure for it is full repentance through Christ.
Alexandra Boillot April 14th, However, while this seems like it should make Svidrigailov an extraordinary man, it does not in my opinion. I still cannot let go of the Napoleonic view of the extraordinary man, especially after Raskolnikov in his explanation to Sonya basically says that he fashioned his extraordinary man on Napoleon.
Even though he does perform heroic deeds, like giving much monetary assistance, these deeds come from his own resources and he does not commit a crime to help others.
However, Svidrigailov is closer to the extraordinary man than Raskolnikov is because he can make clear decisions without too much anguish and once the decision is made, he accepts it and does not dwell on it, no matter how much suffering was caused by that decision. Svidrigailov is truly independent in that no one inhibits him in his decisions. There is not even a conscious sense of having to choose one way in order to please those around him- he does what he wants.
Raskolnikov does not have this attribute: Ultimately though, Raskolnikov is the winner between these two because Svidrigailov commits suicide and dies alone while Raskolnikov gives himself up to God and suffering, with his family and Sonya in his thoughts. Hannah Wilson April 14th, From the time that we first meet him he is constantly described as this scary, sick, yellow man who has lost all faith. What is so shocking and unexpected are the moments of tenderness and the dreams he has right before he commits suicide.
It is in the last moments that we truly see his character. Perhaps I have too much sympathy for the pathetic man, but he appears never to have had anything really going for him. Contrasted with his current dismal living conditions and lack of true love, the dream provides him with an unrealized reality that may only be reached through death.
His dream paints an image of a beautiful funeral, with red roses and Chinese vases, the works. While there are no icons it appears that this is an honorable burial.
However, I am not sure that this is exactly in line with what Svi. He does not pass judgment on her and also respects her for dying of a broken heart and almost envies the respect given to her.
He knows that he will not receive this kind of treatment since he is a pathetic man, but one can always dream. It is also important to look at the parallel between him and Raskolnikov.
Raskolnikov chooses life, but a Christian life, admitting that there is something greater out there. This is the opposite of Svidigailov. At the end of his life Raskolnikov is accuses of being a nihilist and denies it. He admits that he is not an extraordinary man here because the extraordinary man would be able to forsake god and simply live with his actions.
We are left with two very different ideas about life and where to find meaning in it. Raskolnikov chooses life on earth as well as religion while Svidrigailov refuses to believe that our condition can ever be changed.
He clearly finds no meaning on living. For him the only way to end our suffering is to kill ourselves before it is too late. Dostoevsky clearly agrees with Raskolnikov, the entire book is about his religious redemption and he places the Svidrigailov sub-plot as merely an afterthought.
There is hardly a mention of his suicide in the end and no one makes a big deal about it. That leaves me to wonder, why did he include it at all? Sorry for such a long posting this is far longer than words, but I just had a lot to say.
Kaylen Baker April 14th, His ability to master anything allows him to get away with these crimes; we can see this talent even by the way he leaves Raskolnikov dangling by a thread even before he gains knowledge of the deaths of the Alyona and Lizaveta.
Their crimes, while holding them together throughout the story, ultimately end in different directions. I believe Dostoevsky uses this image because in the Trojan War it was honorable to die by Achilles. Why did Dostoevsky fabricate these two men?
In my opinion, Raskolnikov symbolizes the struggles of not an extraordinary man, but not an ordinary one either. What Dostoevsky drives home is that his Russians, and us too, since we are still captivated by this novel are eternally conflicted, but still benefit from a human connection.
He could have taken Dunya after the first shot, but he gives up, and even helps her by giving money to Razumikhin via Sonya. My heart honestly went out to him and his character touched me more than any other.Svidrigailov Character Analysis
Stewart Moore April 14th, 5: She is the disgraced imbodyment of goodness, but how logical is her relationship with Raskolnikov? The relationship between Sonya and Rask. It seems to have an almost omnipotent element, where they both can understand one another without words.
It appears that their relationship served as a catharsis for both Sonya and Rosk. The relationship is also a way to show the reader Rosk. In truth this troubling relationship seems to only be true in literature or other media.
Perhaps strange things such as this happen among real people, but it appears that Rask. However maybe that is simply my lack of being extraordinary. Natalie Komrovsky April 14th, 8: However, I have my reservations about him for the following reason: It also means that the theory of the extraordinary man has no moral guidance; instead it is based solely on logic and reason.
Raskolnikov initially sets out to commit these crimes to benefit those other than himself. We see Christian elements in him throughout the story, even though he killed 2 women. First of all, he commits the murders not for himself, but to help others, giving his motive a moral influence. He later finds Sonya, a beacon of religious light really did I just say that? He recognizes that he has done wrong, and knows that he has to exist within the framework of religious and legal codes.
He is not extraordinary. Svidrigailov is depraved and disgusting. He has no respect for anyone or anything. And while Raskolnikov is driven mad over his sin, Svidrigailov sins constantly and retains his clarity and carelessness. His crimes do nothing to further the prosperity of mankind. He commits suicide in the end, which he drove himself to do. There was no religious influence, as Christianity frowns upon suicide to put it lightly. Svidrigailov operates within the world of logic and reason, void of morality.
He can commit crimes without thinking twice. However, in the end, he does two things that are magnanimous. First, he lets Dunya leave the room after he threatened to rape her. Second, he gives money to Sonya. Does he fit the profile? I think Dostoevsky is clearly trying to disprove the theory of the extraordinary man.
To me, an extraordinary man needs to be good at the core. Dostoevsky is trying to shatter the extraordinary man theory, proving that it is directly opposed to that which is moral and good.
I still think that the two can go together. He is literally haunted by the ghost of his wife, just as Raskolnikov is haunted by the murders he has committed. Yet Svidrigailov appears rather calm in the face of his anxieties. Raskolnikov senses that Svidrigailov is a true nihilist, or a man who places trust in no institution, no religion, no moral code.
Active Themes Svidrigailov goes on to say that the afterlife might be something like a bathhouse where one waits, complete with spiders in the corners.
Raskolnikov thinks that Svidrigailov is insane. Raskolnikov becomes upset, finally, and asks Svidrigailov his business. The latter asks whether Dunya is to marry Luzhin. Svidrigailov hopes to convince Raskolnikov that he truly loves, and has always loved, Dunya, and that he, rather than Luzhin, ought to marry Dunya and provide for her.
Despite his guarded respect for Svidrigailov, however, Raskolnikov will not consent to allow Svidrigailov to meet with Dunya. Svidrigailov wishes for Raskolnikov to arrange a meeting with Dunya, whereby he can convince her not to marry Luzhin and instead to accept ten thousand of his roubles.
Svidrigailov says he is already engaged and has no need for the money, nor does he pine for Dunya any longer. Svidrigailov announces, finally, that Marfa left Dunya three thousand roubles in her will, and that this money will be available in a few weeks.
Does he truly love her? Does he believe he can maintain some kind of mastery over her? Does he merely wish to torment Raskolnikov?