Crime and Punishment, Fathers and Sons, We

1601 WordsMar 30, 20057 Pages
Brilliance surely comes with a price. Often a protagonist is, in his own right, an absolute genius, but for this gift of vision, he must remain isolated for eternity. Crime and Punishment (1886), by Fyodor Dostoevsky, depicts a poverty stricken young man who discovers a revolutionary theory of the mind of a criminal. Despite his psychological insight, Raskolnikov is alienated from society, and eventually forced to test his theory upon himself. Ivan Turgenev's Bazarov, in Fathers and Sons (1862), pioneers the anarchistic philosophy of nihilism, depending entirely on science and reason, but ends up falling passionately in love and then cast out, through death, from the rigidity of thought he held so dear. D-503, the main character of…show more content…
Moments before Bazarov's death, he remarks, "Strength, what strength I still possess, yet I have to die!," alluding to his still-strong disestablishmentarianistic views being plunged further and further into romanticism and tradition. Though he clings to nihilism to the end, it is this ideal which casts Bazarov out from his fellow man and cannot explain his natural, human tendency of love. Zamyatin's We identifies the protagonist as strictly adherent to the rules of society, not once daring to overstep the boundaries. D-503 is portrayed as the model citizen of the One State, never questioning its genius. Human nature, it seems, intervenes, and with his newfound relationship with I-330, D-503 develops a rebellious side, longing for the freedoms granted his ancestors under barbaric rule centuries before. "There were two of me. The former one, D-503, number D-503, and the other… Before, he had just barely shown his hairy paws from within the shell; now all of him broke out, the shell cracked." This epiphany of true happiness, not as defined by the One State as the lack of any wants or needs, but rather as ultimate freedom with responsibility toward humanity, sets into motion a quick sequence of events designed to end this supremacist system. Through internal monologue, the reader is shown D-503's realization of the ironic juxtaposition of the professed magnificence and ultimate wisdom of the One State as opposed to the magnificence and

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