Ivan struggles throughout the novel with his beliefs about God. Curiously, the elder Zosima singles out suicides as those who deserve the most pity, even though it goes against religious doctrine to mourn suicides.
Zosima believes that this habit of lying to himself has led him not to believe in himself, and by extension, to mistrust everyone around him. Smerdyakov counts on the fact that neither option is attractive to Ivan, for it would require Ivan to admit either his guilt or to his intellectual inferiority.
The narrator establishes a familiarity with the reader and puts the reader at ease. It would be foreign to his nature to see someone suffering and walk on by. Hence, because he rejects God, he also rejects the moral categories of good and evil and preaches the message that "everything is permitted.
His lack of faith in God spills over into a lack of faith in himself and his fellow human beings. The events that comprise the plot of the novel are, for the most part, arranged chronologically.
The intellect on which he has relied deserts him and he begins to go insane. The conflict is indeed resolved with the murder of Fyodor, and all pieces of evidence suggest that Dmitry is the murderer.
His sudden realization of his connectedness with the murderer Smerdyakov overwhelms him with guilt and despair. He is a good-hearted boy who becomes isolated and unhappy when he is bullied by other boys. He is passionate and impetuous, as is clear from his dropping his fiancee, Katerina, when he suddenly falls in love with Grushenka.
Around twenty years old at the start of the novel, Alyosha is affiliated with the monastery, where he is a student of the elder Zosima. Completely lacking in dignity despite his wealth, Fyodor Pavlovich is loathed by almost everyone who knows him.
Dostoevsky shows that faith and doubt give rise to very different types of behavior. Nikolai Ilyich Snegiryov Snegiryov is a retired sea captain and the father of Ilyusha.
Kind, gentle, loving, and wise, Alyosha is the opposite of his coarse and vulgar father. That he turns out to be wrong on both counts is proof of the limitations of his philosophy.
She insists on humiliating herself with an unfailing loyalty to the people who hurt her, and though she loves Ivan, she is unable to act on her love until the end of the novel.
Sure, that could give anyone a complex. When Katerina hears of this, she sends Snegiryov money and continues to help him financially. He is selfish, avaricious, greedy, and lustful; indeed, it is difficult to think of any redeeming features in his character.
Throughout the novel, Dostoevsky shows that to choose a life of love and faith, exemplified by Zosima and Alyosha, is the only constructive answer to the evil and suffering that spring from the exercise of free will. Proud and unwilling to be cowed by the larger boys who pick on him, Ilyusha befriends Alyosha, but becomes ill and dies toward the end of the novel.
He initially lives with his elder, Zosima, in the monastery. Coarse, vulgar, greedy, and lustful, Fyodor Pavlovich lives a life devoted exclusively to the satisfaction of his senses, with no thought for those whom he betrays or hurts. She is a proud martyr.
That story is ironically reversed in the case of the wife-murdering philanthropist who escapes detection. Ivan, relying on logic, doubts the existence of God and the immortality of the soul.
Afterwards, Ilyusha falls sick. Although Dostoevsky never develops his narrator, the narrator still serves to draw the reader into the novel.
Though Ivan loves humanity in the abstract, he is repulsed by, and distant to, individuals.
Through her love for Dmitri, the spiritual redemption that began at her meeting with Alyosha continues to develop. Ivan, therefore, believes that man should establish a state of government akin to socialism, in which God is abolished and in which obedience and material wealth are emphasized; the government would, in other words, take away the freedom which so torments man and reinforce the belief that material wealth is, indeed, life.
He stands apart from the rest of humanity, viewing them with disgust in the case of his father or a detached wariness in the case of Alyosha. For example, though he loves Katerina, he is beset by doubts about her feelings for Dmitri and his own feelings, and does not act on his love until the end of the novel.
Repentance follows, and then reform.
Unfortunately, her testimony has the effect of further incriminating Dmitri. He is particularly interested in discussing philosophy with Ivan, whose advocacy of an antireligious amorality paves the way for Smerdyakov to murder Fyodor Pavlovich. Katerina creates suffering for herself by continuing to sacrifice herself to Dmitri, apparently so that she can draw attention to his shortcomings.
Smerdyakov seems to become human only at the end of the novel, ironically, at the moment he commits suicide. He is generous, bold and intellectually precocious, and likes to teach and "develop" younger boys.Character Analysis Smerdyakov has to be up there with the great villains of world literature.
But like Ivan's devil, Smerdyakov isn't all that intimidating a figure. The Brothers Karamazov: Character Profiles, Free Study Guides and book notes including comprehensive chapter analysis, complete summary analysis, author biography information, character profiles, theme analysis, metaphor analysis, and top ten quotes on classic literature.
Character Analysis of Smerdyakov in the Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky PAGES 3. WORDS 1, View Full Essay. More essays like this: character of smerdyakov, fyodor dostoyevsky, the brothers karamazov. character of smerdyakov, fyodor dostoyevsky, the brothers karamazov.
To English-speaking readers, the names of the characters in The Brothers Karamazov can be confusing. Characters are often referred to formally, with both their first and middle names: “Fyodor Pavlovich” or “Dmitri Fyodorovich.” In these cases, the middle names are almost always based on the. Smerdyakov is the most evil character in the novel and can be equated with the devil.
He is the product of the rape of his mother, who was a mentally handicapped and mute vagrant, and his father is almost certainly Fyodor Pavlovich. The Brothers Karamazov: Theme Analysis, Free Study Guides and book notes including comprehensive chapter analysis, complete summary analysis, author biography information, character profiles, theme analysis, metaphor analysis, and top ten quotes on classic literature.Download