Crime and Punishment at 150 (2016)

Crime and Punishment : The Serial Version Todd III, William Mills


The talk will begin with an outline of the importance of the "thick journals" in mid-nineteenth century Russian culture (economic, ideological, aesthetic). It will then move on to how Dostoevsky wrote for serial publication in his mature fiction, i.e. beginning to serialize the novel without having finished writing it. It will analyze some of the ways in which the decisions Dostoevsky made for the serial version survive in the form of the novel as it is now generally published, in single-volume editions. The talk will indicate the ways in which this on-going improvisation made it possible for Dostoevsky to respond, however obliquely, to events which transpired as he was serializing the novel (e.g. the attempted assassination of Alexander II in April 1866).

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