Fyodor Dostoevsky






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        Russian Novelist
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        Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky (1821-81). The Godfather of Existentialism.


          'Happiness does not lie in happiness, but in the achievement of it.'
          - Fyodor Dostoevsky


        Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky. Or Dostoevsky, Dostoievsky, Dostojevskij, Dostoevski or Dostoevskii. Whatever way you spell the name is immaterial. All you need to know is that the man is the greatest writer of the last 1000 years and will be the greatest in the next 1000. Dostoyevsky knew the pathways to the heart and the soul like no-other and through his prose we follow him into the very fabric of existentialism. He could tell a story that seamlessly incorporated the difficulty of being in a way that Sartre could only dream about.


        Fyodor Dostoyevsky, 1872, aged 51 and 9 years before his death


        For me, the incredible tension in his work came from one who had been sentenced to death (for 'political crimes') only to be handed a last-minute reprieve. God only knows what this tension did to the nerves but by walking in this corridor of death he knew the value of the now moments like few others. Consequently, every sentence, every word in his novels and novellas reflect this.

        If there is one book to read before you die then it is Crime and Punishment (1866). On the most basic of levels it is just a cracking read from start to finish. But the superb prose gets into the depths of you, much of it without you knowing, and you find the moral anguish of the main character, Raskolnikov, to be as acute today as it was in 1860s St. Petersburg. More on the book can be found here.

        Dostoevsky rare books and more @ ebay.com (direct link to books) - just checked and a bigger selection than i have seen everywhere else

        Biography

        Akira Kurosawa's The Idiot

        © - Paul Page (2008)

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