CRIME. AND. PUNISHMENT.
I like to write it in all capitals like that and imagine myself saying the two words very loudly, slowly, with all the importance in the world - CRIME! AND! PUNISHMENT! Those are two mighty words if i’d ever heard them. Heavy as molasses.
And that’s exactly and entirely what the book is all about - someone commits a crime and then he receives his punishment.
What a quick and dirty topic, hey? But put it into ol’ Dostoevsky’s hands and 7 million pages later you’ve sweated your way through fifteen different t-shirts reading the damn thing while trying not to have a panic attack.
And how many people die in this book literally just from stressing out too much?
Two! At least two people literally die, and about a hundred more fawn and faint and collapse all over the goddamn place just from the sheer stress of the world.
But I won’t talk my way into as large and deep grave as our dear friend Fyodor did. Here I’ve written down, in chronological order, the passages I highlighted during my reading. I’ll let you take what you will from them.
“Not a single truth has ever been discovered without people first talking utter rot a hundred times or perhaps a hundred thousand times. […] Talk rot by all means, but do it in your own way, and I’ll be ready to kiss you for it. For to talk nonsense in your own way is a damn sight better than talking sense in someone else’s; in the first case, you’re a man; in the second, you’re nothing but a magpie! Truth won’t run away, but life can be easily boarded up.” - Razumikhin
“[M]y friends may be all drunk now, but they’re honest fellows, every one of them, and though we all talk a lot of rot, and i’m afraid I do, too, we shall talk ourselves to the truth one day; for we’re on the right path, while Mr Luzhin isn’t […] for he’s just a puppy.” - Razkolnikov
“You’ve grown fat, and you can no longer deny yourself anything. […] You’ve let yourself go to such an extent that I may say I’m puzzled how the hell you can still be a good and even self-sacrificing doctor. Sleeps on a feather-bed (a doctor, if you please!) […] Why, old chap, you’ve got the real feather-bed principle here applied in practice - and, good Lord, not the feather-bed only! You’re drawn in here; here’s the end of the rainbow, a sheet-anchor, a blessed heaven, the navel of the earth, the three fishes on which the whole world rests, the quintessence of pancakes, luscious pies, an evening samovar, soft sighs and warm fur-lined coats, hot comfortable low stoves to snooze on - why it’s as if you were dead and alive at one and the same time - you get the best of both worlds!” - Razumikhin
“In wine is truth.” - Razumikhin
“I’ve been abroad before, and I always got sick of it. Not that I didn’t like it there; but the sunrise, the bay of Naples, the sea - all that makes you feel so damnably depressed! The horrible thing is that it really makes you yearn for something. No it’s much better at home: here at least you can blame others for everything, while finding excuses for yourself.” - Svidrigaylov
“…take society people - they always have something to talk about, c’est de rigeur. But [intellectual] people like us are always shy and uncommunicative. Now, why’s that, my dear fellow? Is it because we have no social interests of any kind or because we’re so honest that we don’t want to deceive each other?” - Porfiry
“But how am I to know what God’s intentions may be? […] How could such a thing depend on my decision? Who made me a judge to decide who is to live and who is not to live?” - Sonia
“And when a young girl’s heart begins to feel sorry for someone it is, of course, very dangerous for her. For she is bound to want to “save” him, to make him realize his mistakes, to make a new man of him, to make him interested in higher things, and to reclaim him for a new life and new activities - well, we all know what a young girl’s dreams are like.” - Svidrigaylov
“There is nothing harder in the whole world than frankness, and there is nothing easier than flattery.” Svidrigaylov
“Dunya: ‘Roddy, […] It was you who shed blood […].
Razkolnikov: ’Which all men shed, which is being shed, and has always been shed in the world, oceans of it, which is being poured out like champagne, and for which people are crowned in the Capitol and afterwards called the benefactors of mankind.”
Required reading? Yes. The kitten’s rating: 4.5 feverish fainting fits out of 5.