Dostoevsky: The Miraculous Years, 1865-1871, Volume 4

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Princeton University Press, Dec 1, 1996 - Biography & Autobiography - 523 pages
3 Reviews
This long-awaited volume, the fourth of five planned in Joseph Frank's widely acclaimed biography of Dostoevsky, does cover a truly miraculous period of his life-the six most remarkably productive years in the great novelist's entire career. It was in this short span of time that Dostoevsky produced three of his greatest novels-Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, and The Devils-and two of his best novellas, The Gambler and The Eternal Husband. All these masterpieces were written in the midst of harrowing practical and economic circumstances, as Dostoevsky moved from place to place, frequently giving way to his passion for roulette. Having remarried and fled from Russia to escape importuning creditors and grasping dependents, he could not return for fear of being thrown into debtor's prison. He and his young bride, who twice made him a father, lived obscurely and penuriously in Switzerland, Germany, and Italy, as he toiled away at his writing, their only source of income. All the while, he worried that his recurrent epileptic attacks were impairing his literary capacities. His enforced exile intensified not only his love for his native land but also his abhorrence of the doctrines of Russian Nihilism-which he saw as an alien European importation infecting the Russian psyche. Two novels of this period were thus an attempt to conjure this looming spectre of moral-social disintegration, while The Idiot offered an image of Dostoevsky's conception of the Russian Christian ideal that he hoped would take its place.
  

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Dostoevsky

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

The three previous volumes of Frank's biography (The Seeds of Revolt, 1821-1849, LJ 9/1/76; The Years of Ordeal, 1850-1859, LJ 11/15/83; and The Stir of Liberation, 1860-1865, LJ 3/15/87) have ... Read full review

Review: Dostoevsky: The Miraculous Years, 1865-1871 (Dostoevsky biography #4)

User Review  - Bryn Hammond - Goodreads

In which he knuckles down to writing novels. He marries his stenographer who seems to be the doormat-type. Yes, but see the last instalment of his life; and he's absolutely desperate to deliver his ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
3
The Unhappiest of Mortals
9
Khlestakov in Wiesbaden
25
Our Poor Little Defenseless Boys and Girls
42
The Sources of Crime and Punishment
60
From Novella to Novel
80
A Reading of Crime and Punishment
96
REMARRIAGE
149
Across the Alps
294
The Idiot
316
Historical Visions
342
THE PAMPHLET AND THE POEM
363
The Life of a Great Sinner
365
The Eternal Husband
382
Fathers Sons and Stavrogin
396
Exiles Return
413

A Little Diamond
151
The Gambler
170
Escape and Exile
184
Turgenev and BadenBaden
204
Geneva Life among the Exiles
223
In Search of a Novel
241
A Perfectly Beautiful Man
256
An Inconsolable Father
276
History and Myth in The Devils I
435
History and Myth in The Devils II
453
The Book of the Impostors
472
Conclusion
499
Abbreviations
503
Notes
505
Index
517
Copyright

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About the author (1996)

Joseph Frank is the author of an award-winning multivolume biography of Dostoevsky.

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