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lopezpor's avatar

Could Dostoevsky have had a similar personality to Raskolnikov?

Asked by lopezpor (241points) August 1st, 2010

The book that has fascinated thousands: crime and punishment! How did Dostoevsky create Raskolnikov’s mind? Do you think that the author adhered aspects of his own personality to this gruesome monomaniac? What aspects in particular, if so?

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6 Answers

tranquilsea's avatar

Authors have to be able to imagine and put themselves in other’s shoes. The period of time when Dostoevsky was writing that book there was a lot of political turmoil in Russia. He was probably around many people who would talk and theorize about the human condition. So I don’t necessarily think he had those propensities himself. But he sure did a wonderful job understanding and writing about Raskolnikov’s state of mind.

I just finished reading that book about two months ago. What a fantastic read!

CMaz's avatar

Its the Id.

lopezpor's avatar

@tranquilsea agreed about the fantastic read!

Jeruba's avatar

There are readers who actually believe that an author writing in the first person is writing about his own experience. When you’ve stretched your imagination to the limits to come up with a plausible account of a character’s inner and outer lives, and then your reader thinks that all you’ve done is write down what actually happened to you, this can be very frustrating.

It’s undeniable that an author must be capable of thinking of the things he writes about his characters. But it’s a great mistake to assume that in describing them he is invariably describing himself.

An author has to draw on everything he knows about himself and about other people, extending his imagination into the corners of his characters’ minds through his powers of intuition and insight to make them real and believable even if they are nothing like him. That is part of the genius of the great authors. They reveal our common humanity, but they also invent what they haven’t personally experienced, and we find it believable.

evandad's avatar

They were both experts in quantum theory.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

What @Jeruba said. Great authors don’t have to live it to describe it.

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