Publisher: RHUS; Reissue edition (1 April 1984)
Review by: Murthy KVVS
I have recently gone through this much talked about novel ,”The Brothers Karamazov”. And I would like to share my astounding thoughts in brief. Already a lot of people came out with their own interpretations on the theme,principal characters,ethical debates and so on.Trying my best to pick out some unique characters in the novel. In attitude and outlook,they would get us petrified and protracted. It’s truly a classic novel.Not an easy reading at all.One should put a period of at least 15 days aside to read and understand its quality of eternity and spirit of life pestering questions.People simply say that it’s a tale of murder mystery.And of course,that’s true to some extent but it’s far beyond such conclusion.To stir the attention of common reader,Dostoevsky might have taken such exterior and in reality he churned the entire human struggle in its interior layers.
The descriptions some times longer than what we have expected but all these are worth reading.For example,it took almost fifteen pages when Alyosha entered the house of Ilyusha,the stone pelting brat, and was introduced to the family members of that drunkard captain. But there was a beauty in every sentence of that episode.Not only that,the psychological conditions of three characters like Lice,Father Ferapont and Michael,the brother of Zosima the elder.Lise,the crippled and rich young girl how she had tried to seduce the monastic young disciple Alyosha was a message to all spiritual seekers.The trickier part is when he yielded to household life with her,she intrigued to switch her priority to his brother by requesting a letter to pass him.
Father Ferapont was another character.He was an ascetic with extreme fasting by taking very little bread ,that too with three or four days gap.Egoistic about his practices while he always was criticizing the elder Zosima for his popularity among the people.He didn’t like confession taking from fellow brothers.And he was claiming that ghosts would personally talk to him,especially those who live on the trees of premises of monastery. The reader could identify many people with this character.His way of dressing,behaviour and talking ,everything could be seen in front of us. Dostovesky’s selection of words,pattern of speaking styles invariably awesome.
Michael-the elder Zosima’s brother, who was the reason to Zosima’s saint like transformation was in fact nearing his death.How a human heart responds to the breath taking nature’s bounty when it’s under the knowledge of final journey was revealed through this character.The way he spoke with a bird and all other trivial activities strikes an unknown chord in us.There are many other things I like about this time tested novel.But it would be continued in the days to come whenever I feel for it.But it is wonderful to know that all this heavy duty psychological and philosophical thriller was written before Freud came into arena with his groundbreaking psychoanalysis theories.