These are drowned or will be drowned, and the healed man, from whom the devils have departed, sits at the feet of Jesus. Background[ edit ] In late s Russia there was an unusual level of political unrest caused by student groups influenced by liberal, socialist and revolutionary ideas. He focused on the group organized by young agitator Sergey Nechayev , particularly their murder of a former comrade—Ivan Ivanov—at the Petrovskaya Agricultural Academy in Moscow. The political polemic and parts of the philosophical novel were merged into a single larger scale project, which became Demons. Dostoevsky was an active participant in a secret revolutionary society formed from among the members of the Petrashevsky Circle. Young, educated, upright and sensible, Anton Lavrentyevich is a local civil servant who has decided to write a chronicle of the strange events that have recently occurred in his town.
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Start your review of The Possessed Write a review Shelves: novels , borscht-and-kvass , pres , oxford-classics , nonreviews Popular Culture: An Alphabetical Contempt. All populist entertainment is repulsive, useless, dangerous and witheringly anti-intellectual. But thats hardly Beckett, is it?
I witnessed first hand the slow declension of burgeoning intellects through a routine of television, video games and a fear of reading books.
I started to read books. Who cares about all that bulldash, the haw-hawing in ginsenged dining rooms? One day, I heard some Stravinsky and burst into tears.
The only way to grow as a human being through art is to confront difficulty, to embrace difficulty, and be pleasantly surprised when that effort translates into bliss.
But I truly believe people who hide in dreary commercial art are betraying their capacity to think and improve and understand. While the underlying sentiment is unfortunately pompous and elitist, the style is commendable. The ideas unfold neatly, the tonal layering is excellent, and the suggestion of self-awareness trying to reach the light beneath the smothering weight of incredible ego and intellectual insecurity almost begging to be psychoanalyzed is subtle but compelling. Really quite a piece of writing to convey so much so briefly.
I Elias wrote: "Really quite a piece of writing to convey so much so briefly. I would review your review, but my meta addiction is currently being treated by Victorian doorstops and magnesium. I open with the closing lines, on the brink of exhaustion, not sure of my own state of sanity. Reading Dostoyevsky is a bit like spending time with close family members with a diametrically opposed worldview: I love them dearly, unconditionally, but I dont LIKE them at all.
If Raskolnikov hypnotised me, and Myshkin made me curse, the Devils have a slower, yet even more powerful impact on my mental equilibrium.
While I was reading the previous novels in a frenzy, without any interruptions, I had to take a prolonged break in the middle of this one. I thought I could deal with the Russian nationalist and orthodox mindset by now, but that was too much. And the representative for the church, thrilled by the confession and completely without pity for the child, tells the murderer that he will be forgiven, if only he suffers enough to please god. First of all, what kind of a god is that, who encourages suffering, even finds delight and pleasure in it, but completely ignores the victim?
What if I told my child that it is acceptable to brutally assault somebody as long as I see that he suffers afterwards - that the crime is actually laudable because it gives me a welcome opportunity to watch my child suffer duly? Where is the educational police to arrest me for such parenting? He worries the murderer will turn into a laughing-stock if he publishes his confession.
And also, the crime is far too common to raise any eyebrows. That scene made me close the book and not re-open it for weeks. This may be Dostoyevsky, and he may be a genius, but I have a limit to what I can take in. And I am not willing to suffer to please any sadistic, patriarchal, sexually biased and oppressive god. Self-sacrifice is not a virtue in my worldview, it is a vice which generates violence - often resulting in horrible crimes committed against innocent people without connection to the fanatics who believe they are being religious heroes by promoting suffering.
And I am doing it all for you! I want to be seen! It is all about ME! My confession is to be read publicly, so people talk about ME! And it is ME suffering, not that inelegant little girl, who was driven mad. We are not talking about her, it is MY suffering we are looking at. MY right to be seen as a hero in pain for the sake of penitence! And I come to the conclusion that I am trying to square a circle when I want to reconcile the evil characters and the theological idea.
That was my question, and it is wrong. It is not good. It just is. Once I have dumped my connection between ethics and religion, and accepted the reality of the characters, I can read on. And I am happy I did. The Devils at work! Who are the devils? They are a group of radical socialists, trying to impose another kind of absolute truth on a confused and explosive nation, foreshadowing the Russian Revolution and its inhumane aspects perfectly.
As a document of historical processes, I found Devils to be incredibly enlightening, as it shows why Russia was incapable of transforming a patriarchal tyranny into a liberal democracy. The new ideas are propagated in the same religiously exclusive way as the old doctrine. There is one absolute truth, which all have to live by, and it will be forced upon the people by using violence. Socialist or tsarist power - the question is only which party is militarily stronger.
Both have their blind followers and their holy dogma to keep people on track. In both cases, self- sacrifice is the motor which drives the destructive action. In both cases, the tirade in the Revelation about being spewed out by god your chosen infallible idea! Who has the greatest soul, who dies in the most visibly dramatic way?
And that means she commits the crime of being lukewarm. Devils is harrowing, darkly funny, brilliantly told. It is a masterpiece.
It is recommended to all who want to understand the strange patterns of sexual, political and ritual power that charismatic men exert over dependent people - even to this day! A tale so deeply unethical, it is a challenge to read.
A worthwhile challenge though!
The Possessed Book PDF, ePub eBook
Start your review of The Possessed Write a review Shelves: novels , borscht-and-kvass , pres , oxford-classics , nonreviews Popular Culture: An Alphabetical Contempt. All populist entertainment is repulsive, useless, dangerous and witheringly anti-intellectual. But thats hardly Beckett, is it? I witnessed first hand the slow declension of burgeoning intellects through a routine of television, video games and a fear of reading books. I started to read books. Who cares about all that bulldash, the haw-hawing in ginsenged dining rooms? One day, I heard some Stravinsky and burst into tears.
Last checked: 31 Minutes ago! Get a free 7 day subscription! What emerged was a prophetic and ferociously funny masterpiece of ideology and murder in pre-revolutionary Russia The Possessed by Fyodor Dostoyevsky From reader reviews: Marla Mestas: Information is provisions for people to get better life, information nowadays can get by anyone on everywhere. The information can be a understanding or any news even restricted. If you find the unstable resource then you have it as your main information it will have huge disadvantage for you.