11 votes
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The Brothers Karamazov - When was Russia saved before?

What exactly is he referring to? He's most probably referring to the events in Russian history when Russia was on a brink of ceasing to exist as a state. There were a number of grave moments ...
tum_'s user avatar
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9 votes
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The Brothers Karamazov - What is the "Chain bridge"?

Where the translator (Constance Garnett) used “secret police”, the Russian text is “Третьего отделения” (tretyego otdeleniya) meaning “third section”, that is, the Third Section of His Imperial ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
8 votes
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The Brothers Karamazov - What is "The Bell"?

Колокол (Kolokol meaning “bell”) was a mid-19th century dissident Russian-language newspaper, printed in London and Geneva to evade Russian state censorship. Commenting on the lines of verse quoted by ...
Gareth Rees's user avatar
5 votes
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The Brothers Karamazov - ladies of the eighteen stone?

The translator chose to "translate" the Russian measure of weight of that time into something that would make sense to English natives. In the original text Dostoevsky uses the phrase ...
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5 votes

What is the significance of the "suffocation scene" at Tchermashnya in Brothers Karamazov?

First, congratulations on having read so far in Brothers Karamazov. It takes determination, at the very least, to suffer through the excruciating detail that is characteristic of Dostoevsky’s style. ...
Vekzhivi's user avatar
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4 votes

In the Brothers Karamazov, did Dostoyevsky take those characters out of real life?

My source for this answer is "A Karamazov Companion" by Vitor Terras (1981), University of Wisconsin Press. Terras writes: The Brothers Karamazov contains more autobiographic ele­ments than ...
LLCampos's user avatar
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4 votes
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What is the text Ivan refers to in the preface to the Grand Inquisitor

It is a XIIth century Slavic apocrypha «Хождение Богородицы по мукам». In English: “The journey of the Mother of God through hell”. Aleksey Tolstoy’s novel Хождение по мукам (The Road to Calvary ...
user21102's user avatar
3 votes
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The Brothers Karamazov - Why does Dmitri use "Bernard" as an insult?

After the first mention of Claude Bernard, Mitya uses him as a sort of personalised synecdoche for the worldview that he feels such scientists represent, the conquest of religion by science. The word &...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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3 votes

The Brothers Karamazov - What is "The Bell"?

This must refer to Kolokol, which means "Bell" or "The Bell" (Russian doesn't have a word for "the") in Russian. It was a weekly Russian-language 19th-century newspaper ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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2 votes

What is the significance of the "suffocation scene" at Tchermashnya in Brothers Karamazov?

In my reading of this passage, a few things have always struck me: Mitya alerts the forester who is relatively uninterested in the entire ordeal, though he still is intrigued enough to take a peek ...
AnHeirOfElendil's user avatar

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