Title

The Duality Within Dostoevsky's Ethical Statement Presented in 'The Brothers Karamazov"

Publication Year

1976

Keywords

Literature, ethics, Dostoevsky, good versus evil, morality, literary criticism

Disciplines

Comparative Literature | Russian Literature | Slavic Languages and Societies | Sociology

Abstract

In The Brothers Karamazov, Dostoevsky is concerned with the existence of human evil. Men are so blatantly unjust, inhumane, and disruptive that it seems as though either there is no God, or that God is unconcerned with human affairs. Dostoevsky questions the legitimacy of a morality not founded in absolute Good and Evil. He does not attempt to prove the existence of God, except by a sense of the Good within each person. For Dostoevsky, the existence of God need not be proven;only the necessity of the existence of God need be shown. He tries to justify God in a chaotic world by asserting, first, that God is necessary for Good, and, the, that Evil is necessary so that man can choose Good. The tragedy and suffering of life result from a battle between Good and Evil within intelligent people. Dostoevsky maintains that the most essential right for the dignity of man is the right of the individual to be responsible for his actions.

Department 1 Awarding Honors Status

English: Literature and Writing

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