Examples Of Falsity In Fyodor Dostoevsky's 'Notes From Underground'

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PART 1: UNDERSTANDING THE UNDERGROUND MAN Falsity is defined by the online Oxford dictionary as “the fact of being untrue, incorrect, or insincere”. In the novel Notes from Underground, Fyodor Dostoevsky highlights the falsity, or artificiality of not only Russian individuals, but of Russian culture as a whole. The novel describes falsity as people who are superficial and shallow. While the main character, the Underground Man, did not consider himself a slave to the falsity, he observed it in others he came into contact with. A good example of this is when the Underground Man went to dinner with his “friends” (they were hardly so). At this dinner, he mentions how the individuals are good-looking on the outside but rather unintelligent on the inside. At one point, he even says that one of them has a “handsome but silly face” (Dostoevsky), thus indicating that on the outside, his face was “handsome” but at the same time he was also “silly”, or foolish and shallow. They were not who the portrayed themselves to be. …show more content…

In his younger years, he tried to interact with these false people, but it in fact drove him mad, and as a result he went underground. On page XX, the Underground man explains that: “... ingenuous people and active figures are all active simply because they are dull and narrow minded. How to explain it? Here’s how: as a consequence of their narrow-mindedness, they take the most immediate and secondary causes for the primary ones, and thus become convinced more quickly and easily than others that they have found an indisputable basis for their doings, and so they feel at ease; and that, after all, is the main thing”

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