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The Brothers Karamazov: The Garnett Translation (Norton Critical Editions) [Paperback]

Fyodor Dostoyevsky , Ralph E. Matlaw , Constance Garnett
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (237 customer reviews)


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The Brothers Karamazov (Second Edition)  (Norton Critical Editions) The Brothers Karamazov (Second Edition) (Norton Critical Editions) 4.8 out of 5 stars (11)
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Book Description

April 17, 1976 0393092143 978-0393092141 New

Constance Garnett’s translation, the basic version in English of this Russian masterpiece, has been revised by the editor for accuracy and readability.

Dostoevsky’s sources for the characters and situations of the novel are set forth in an extract from Lev Reynus’s Dostoevsky and Staraya Russa and in selections from Dostoevsky’s letters and diary, all translated by Professor Matlaw. Konstantin Mochulsky’s essay provides a general discussion of the work. Important questions as to the craft of the novel, its characterization, Dostoevsky’s symbolism, the Grand Inquisitor, and the theme of religious salvation are surveyed in critical pieces by Dmitry Tschizewskij, Robert L. Belknap, Edward Wasiolek, Harry Slochower, D. H. Lawrence, Albert Camus, Nathan Rosen, Leonid Grossman, Ya. E. Golosovker, R. P. Blackmur, and Ralph E. Matlaw. Several of these selections are also recently translated from the Russian. A Selected Bibliography is included.


Editorial Reviews

Review

''[Dostoevsky is] at once the most literary and compulsively readable of novelists we continue to regard as great . . . The Brothers Karamazov stands as the culmination of his art -- his last, longest, richest, and most capacious book.'' --Washington Post Book World

''The Brothers Karamazov is the most magnificent novel ever written.'' --Sigmund Freud

''Heartily recommended to any reader who wishes to come as close to Dostoevsky's Russian as it is possible.'' --Joseph Frank, Princeton University

''The Brother Karamazov...is the strongest [novel] Dostoevsky composed, and is where his genius should be sought...he seems to me to have a deeper relationship with Shakespeare than criticism so far has revealed.'' --Harold Bloom --This text refers to the MP3 CD edition.

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Russian --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Series: Norton Critical Editions
  • Paperback: 912 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; New edition (April 17, 1976)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393092143
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393092141
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 4.3 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (237 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #823,349 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
70 of 75 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fulfillment of Artistic Vision August 3, 2000
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
"I would die happy if I could finish this final novel, for I would have then expressed myself completely."
This statement from Fyodor Dostoyevsky helps elucidate both the theme and purpose of the The Brothers Karamazov, one of the greatest masterpieces of world literature. Superficially, the novel deals with a patricide and how each of the book's characters contributed directly or indirectly to that murder.
Yet, The Brothers Karamazov, at its heart, is so much more. Its underlying theme deals with the drive for self-redemption in the eyes of both God and man and the role suffering plays in facilitating that redemption.
Fyodor Karamazov has fathered four sons, Dmitri, Ivan and Alyosha, by two wives, and one, Smerdyakov, with a peasant woman known as stinking Lizaveta.
Fyodor Karamazov, a vulgar and ill-tempered man represents, for Dostoyevsky, the Russian government of his times. Like the government, Fyodor shuns his children, preferring instead the materialistic, but joyless, life of wealth and possessions. His union with Lizaveta, who comes to represent all the peasants of Dostoyevsky's Russia, produces Smerdyakov, a bastard child who, in his own turn, will be raped and pillaged by the government and will go on to give birth, metaphorically, to bastard children of his own.
Karamazov's eldest son, Dmitri, an impulsive sensualist, finds respect as an overbearing soldier but one whose inability to pay his debts eventually turns him into a poor and irrational man.
Ivan, Fyodor's second son, is a cold intellectual who finds his fulfillment in his literary and creative abilities. He becomes famous through his writings, especially those concerning the Russian Church.
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111 of 122 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
In his most comprehensive (and not coincidentally, his final) masterpiece, Dostoyevsky addresses and discusses a number of the most fundamental and universal issues which face man. His multiple perspectives are embodied in seperate characters -- taken together, these characters form the whole of the Karamazov family, and these perspectives constitute the whole of Dostoyevsky's view.
Each of the brothers represents a distinct school of thought or values -- the impulsive Dmitri portrays the instinctive and carnal desires of man; the nihilist, Ivan, displays the cold and unforgiving intellectual, governed by the rules of logic alone; the religious Alyosha, student to the Great Elder Zossima, depicts the humble and devout spiritualist. While the murder of their father, Fyodor Karamazov, is the catalyst to the real action of the book, it is certainly not the central focus -- a fact that might be surmised in light of the fact that the murder is not carried out until more than halfway through the text.
Instead, the work is a discussion and analysis of man's values and beliefs, and an affirmation of Dostoyevsky's fundamental conviction: that the presence of the human spirit cannot be denied without disastrous results, and that despite the assertions of the nihilists, God is a necessary element in the world of man.
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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding May 2, 2008
Format:Audio CD
I must admit that when I first began listening to this audiobook I did not care for the narrator's voice. After I made it to the second disk I began to more fully realize what a talented voice actor he actually was, and the remaining 28 disks or so were a great joy. His narration is delivered in a clear and warm manner and each character is given an unique voice and inflection. I will never be able to imagine Fyodor Pavlovitch Karamazov sounding any other way (Father Zossima as well). As far as the content of the book is concerned, The Brothers Karamazov is hands down one of the finest novels ever written. If you have never read it, this audiobook is well worth your time.
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49 of 52 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Anyone interested in the central question facing mankind will find `The Brothers Karamazov' an essential guide. That question--on man's capacity for responsibility and the proper role of the state and religion--is posed throughout the story in dialogue and events, and is framed neatly in a 20-page section where Ivan presents a poem titled `The Grand Inquisitor' to his brother Alyosha. The chapter that bears that title (Book V, Chapter V) is a masterpiece in itself and should be studied for its narrative technique alone. But the ideas it presents are so immense, so mind-blowing and inspirational, that literary criticism is not sufficient.

Indeed, `The Brothers Karamazov' should not be classed merely as a novel--it is a book of philosophy, theology, and sociology as well that ranks with the greatest documents in those disciplines. There is a fictitious plot, of course, and the characters in the story are some of the most interesting in all of literature, so it is rightly praised as a novel. But the modern reader looking for a plot of twists and romantic intrigues is bound to disappointment. Dostoevsky does not stir up drama through the placement of unexpected developments or improbable character traits. Instead, he relies on the inherent needs and wants of all men to make vivid his story.

The amount of dialogue may be shocking (tedious) to one accustomed to the modern show-don't-tell policy in storytelling. Today, novelists and screenwriters let a character's actions speak for them--it is quicker and provides a much more convincing impression. It also limits the kind of ideas that are posed in the story to simple, prosaic ones like `she likes him' or `he wants to defeat him.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Wonderful book and in good condition except for one damaged page.
Published 6 days ago by robert blake
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting story, brilliant read by Constantine Gregory
I am reading and listening The Brothers Karamazov. It is a great pleasure to hear Constantine Gregory read this story. He has the excellent voice to do a job like this. Read more
Published 9 days ago by CP Ferwerda-Rekers
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent e-version!
19C Russian literature at its best. Great e-book version. Easy to locate by chapter or last page read. Read more
Published 15 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Great classic
This is the second time I have read this book. Got much more from this version. I definitely would purchase again.
Published 28 days ago by Suzanne Alverson
4.0 out of 5 stars Russian Classic Literature
Dostoevsky tells the twisted story of three brothers and their relationship with their father. A typical novel of the 19th century. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Edie's reads
5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional
A joy to read every morning with a cup of coffee..
The characters and circumstances of events provide a stage
to present relavant insights into.. the who we are.. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Ken
5.0 out of 5 stars Synopsis and should you read
Long and timeless rendition of brother's relationship with each other and their father. Make sure you're committed to spend the time
Published 1 month ago by David Kusko
5.0 out of 5 stars An epic novel (of course). Very fulfilling.
I knew nothing of this novel prior to reading it, other than; authored by Dostoyevsky, it is one of the grand classic pieces of Russian literature, and many consider it "the best... Read more
Published 1 month ago by T.M. Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the great classics
Dostoevsky sets the standard for the great Russian novels, and this classic is definitely one of them. A great read.
Published 1 month ago by Old Pens "Harvey"
2.0 out of 5 stars Still Can't Finish It
I hoped the handiness of a Kindle version would let me get deeper into this novel. Unfortunately, the novel is too loosely structured to help you wade through the multitudes of... Read more
Published 2 months ago by tommycat
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