Crime and Punishment

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Crime and Punishment

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1Madcow299
Jan. 26, 2008, 1:37pm

This book was fun when I started because I read by candle light during a blackout. I could not finish because it lost it's novelty after the light came on. Is it just the culture difference because I'm a young American? Why do people like this book?

2nperrin
Bearbeitet: Jan. 26, 2008, 1:42pm

And so many people like it, too! I am a young American but everyone I know who's demographically similar to myself really enjoys Dostoyevsky, while Crime and Punishment was one of my top five most hated books ever. I got about a third of the way through, took a break for a few years, and then restarted and finished though I couldn't stand it. The psychological aspect totally didn't work for me, I found Raskolnikov ridiculous rather than believable, and the preachy Christianity made me want to throw the book across the room. "Without God, anything is permitted," blah blah, Dostoyevsky, let me introduce you to Euthyphro.

ETA: Wow, I can really rant about that one, huh?

3atimco
Jan. 27, 2008, 12:42pm

I actually agree with that philosophy (we need morality to come from something other than ourselves). But it was a bit of a struggle to get through the book. I read half in one sitting, and then let it sit for about a month because I just didn't want to pick it up again. Finally I did, and read the second half in one sitting. It felt like a duty, but when I was reading it I forgot all about that and really did enjoy it.

It was a book I hated picking up, but enjoyed once I did. If that makes any sense... :-)

4nperrin
Jan. 27, 2008, 1:00pm

4: I felt like that, too, actually. Once I picked it up I could get immersed and keep reading for 50 or 100 pages at a sitting, but I always felt like it was a chore to go back to. That's how I ended up leaving it for several years in between!

5SanctiSpiritus Erste Nachricht
Jan. 27, 2008, 5:36pm

People who deplore Dostoevsky's Christian morals are the same ones who lament the Bible as well. A little fortitude and restraint, they hate.

6nperrin
Jan. 27, 2008, 6:50pm

On the contrary--if Dostoyevsky had shown a little restraint from being so didactic, I wouldn't have had any problem at all.

7atimco
Jan. 28, 2008, 8:24am

Perhaps "didactic" wasn't frowned upon in his time as it is nowadays. He probably thought he was writing quite acceptably — and it is most likely he was, within the context of his era. Naturally there are some things that are not going to translate well for modern readers, because we belong to a different culture and have different values. You are welcome to dislike Dostoyevsky all you want and on whatever grounds, but he (like you and I) is a product of his times and it's a bit rough to fault him for something his culture encouraged.

I feel like I need a reread (as if I don't have enough on my to-read list as is!). I blazed through my two sittings with this book so fast, I must have missed the preachiness. Of course, I'm a Christian, so perhaps I have a higher immunity to that sort of thing :-)

8amancine
Jan. 28, 2008, 8:34am

#5 - I'm fine with fortitude and restraint. It's relentless religious pontificating that I'm opposed to.

9SanctiSpiritus
Feb. 3, 2008, 10:33pm

It's the unabashed unenlightened I'm opposed to.

10whitewavedarling
Feb. 26, 2008, 11:43am

I think I'm going to have to reread as well. I actually read this in highschool for my AP class (about nine years ago, so it's foggy), and I loved it. I do remember getting a bit annoyed with different names for single characters and similar names for different characters, but I suppose that just goes with the long Russian novels in many cases (sorry to stereotype--that's just been my impression so far). I know I enjoyed looking into the dream sequences. I didn't like the main character, but I did find him fascinating. For me, it was engaging, but I'm afraid I'll have to go back to it to comment on anything else. It's interesting, though--I don't remember noticing it with him, but I've always noticed it with some of Dickens' longer works. hmm....