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The Idiot by Dostoevsky

The Idiot by Dostoevsky

 

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The Idiot is a novel written by the Russian author Fyodor Dostoevsky

and first published in 1868. The original Russian title is "Идиот",

"Idiot" (the Russian language does not use definite articles).

Dostoevsky considered entitling the work Prince Myshkin.

Prince Lyov Nikolayevich Myshkin returns to Russia after a long

absence. Myshkin suffers from epilepsy – just like Fyodor Dostoevsky

himself – and is prone to periods of blackouts. This has been treated

with some success in Switzerland. The Myshkin family line is said to

end with him and his cousin.

On the train to Saint Petersburg, Myshkin meets and befriends the dark

and enamoured Rogozhin. The latter tells the prince about his passion

for Nastasya Filippovna, a beautiful woman with a bad reputation.

Myshkin arrives at the house of General Yepanchin, who is married to

the only other living member of the Myshkin line. Myshkin learns that

Ganya, a young go-getter and secretary of the General, wants to marry

Nastasya for her dowry. The prince feels an irresistible desire to

meet her after hearing about her and even more so when he views a

picture of her in the General's office.

At Nastasya's name day party, Myshkin sees Rogozhin arrive drunk and

offer the young woman a large amount of money to follow him. The

prince perceives the despair of Nastasya and proposes to her in order

to save her from her situation. She, believing the prince's offer

stems only from pity, flees with Rogozhin. The two men, formerly bound

by friendship, become rivals.

Rogozhin even tries to kill his friend with a knife, but is hindered

when, due to the stress of the situation, Myshkin falls into an

epileptic seizure.

iPhone Screenshots

The Idiot by Dostoevsky iPhone Screenshot 1
The Idiot by Dostoevsky iPhone Screenshot 2

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The information may be outdated (2011-04-12 15:16:45). For actual information go to iTunes


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