Dimensions of Laughter in Crime and Punishment

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Susquehanna University Press, 2000 - Literary Criticism - 168 pages
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"The present study offers new insights into the utilization of belletristic laughter not only in Crime and Punishment but also in the rest of Dostoevsky's major works. Additionally, it seeks to demonstrate that Dostoevsky's use of laughter bears a certain resemblance to the technique of other authors who employ laughter for artistic purposes - Leo Tolstoy, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Umberto Eco among them."--BOOK JACKET.
 

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Contents

Laughter as an Instrument of Characterization
25
Svidrigaylov
31
Porfiry
36
Luzhin
40
Katerina Ivanovna
43
Razumikhin
48
Iterative Patterns with Laughter
52
Intensification
56
Aggression
85
Childlikeness
90
Betrayal
96
The Laughter of Carnival
105
Crownings and Decrownings
108
The HatSnatch
112
The Currus Navalis
124
The King of Carnival
128

Flashbacks
59
Analogy
68
Contrast
73
Laughter with Symbolic Overtones
76
Insanity
80
Final Observations
132
Notes
137
Selected Bibliography
157
Index
166
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Page 17 - ... an instrument out of tune, a fly in ointment, snow in May, Archimedes studying geometry in a siege, and all discordant things ; a wolf in sheep's clothing, a breach of bargain, and falsehood in general ; the multitude taking the law in their own hands, and everything of the nature of disorder ; a corpse at a feast, parental cruelty, filial ingratitude, and whatever is unnatural ; the entire catalogue of the vanities given by Solomon are all incongruous, but they cause feelings of pain, anger,...
Page 17 - As above shown, laughter naturally results only when consciousness is unawares transferred from great things to small — only when there is what we may call a descending incongruity.
Page 25 - How much lies in Laughter : the cipher-key, wherewith we decipher the whole man ! Some men wear an everlasting barren simper ; in the smile of others lies a cold glitter as of ice : the fewest are able to laugh, what can be called laughing, but only sniff and titter and snigger from the throat outwards ; or at best, produce some whiffling husky cachinnation, as if they were laughing...
Page 17 - A decrepit man under a heavy burden, five loaves and two fishes among a multitude, and all unfitness and gross disproportion ; an instrument out of tune, a fly in ointment, snow in May, Archimedes studying geometry in a siege, and all discordant things ; a wolf in sheep's clothing, a breach of bargain, and falsehood in general ; the multitude taking the law...

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