During the 19th century, Western-influenced positivist theories gained popularity in Russia. Some extremist positivists advocated the usage of pure ground in doing determinations at the disbursal of morality, which was epitomized in the Ubermensch theory, that a adult male can accomplish superhuman position by liberating himself from the restraints of society to prosecute his will to power. To warn readers of the restrictions of entirely trusting on ground, writer Fyodor Dostoevsky wrote the novel Crime and Punishment. By portraying Raskolnokov ‘s battle to go a demigod, Dostoevsky shows the booby traps of doing determinations on pure logic due to Raskolnikov ‘s internal battles with fright and guilt.
At the beginning of the novel, Raskolnikov justifies his slaying of his landlady with the thoughts of the Ubermensch and utilitarianism. While in a tavern, Raskolnikov listens to a conversation between an officer and a pupil. One of them grounds that if the ugly pawnbroker was killed, so “ a 100 thousand good workss could be done and helped, on that old adult female ‘s money which will be buried in a monastery ” ( Dostoevsky 68 ) . Raskolnikov rationalizes his program to slay her with the useful belief that her one decease would salvage the lives of 100s. The money she leaves behind would hold been wasted on priests who would laud her worthless being everlastingly, so it makes sense to donate it to the hapless. He weighs the pros and cons of his determination logically, while ignoring traditional ethical motives that deem slaying wholly unethical. He believes that because he is intelligent and has the ability to believe rationally, he should be able to traverse moral boundaries that hold back ordinary work forces and carry out the slaying. To transport out his program, he murders her with the blunt terminal of the axe, which shows his deep hate of her. The blunt terminal does non do instant decease, so he hacks her multiple times. As a consequence, the victim suffers tormenting hurting before deceasing. This is an act of retaliation ; he inflicts on her the hurting she has inflicted upon the hapless and basically believes. At first, it seems that he has separated himself from ordinary people by going a demigod because he has overstepped moral Torahs. In world, while he is apologizing his doctrine, he discovers that the existent cause for his slaying is non for the improvement of society, but for his ain selfish grounds, chiefly for him to alleviate himself of the big debt he owes to Alyona.
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The fright Raskolnikov feels as a consequence of the slayings shows some of the defects in his rationalism. After he steals Alyona ‘s money and valuables, he hides them under a stone. He is afraid that the constabulary will happen this grounds, but with the money hidden, he can non carry through his promise to utilize it to profit humanity, which was portion of his logical thinking in slaying the pawnbroker. In add-on, after the slaying, he is discovered by Lizaveta, “ gazing in stupefaction at her murdered sister ” ( Dostoevsky 82 ) . Fearing that she would describe him to the constabulary, he so proceeds to divide her skull. This unplanned slaying destroys all of his justifications for interrupting the moral codification. It is a selfish act he commits out of fright of being arrested. The Ubermensch must transport out his actions without any fright, yet Raskolnikov lacks this confidence and is fearful of the effects. In fact, he thinks that he is “ viler and more loathsome than the louse [ that he ] killed ” ( Dostoevsky 275 ) . By take downing himself to something every bit lowly as a louse, he becomes an ordinary individual, instead than an extraordinary adult male, which demonstrates the defects in this doctrine.
Guilt is another obstruction to going a demigod. Raskolnikov is even overcome with guilt before the slaying. In his dream that flashbacks to his childhood, he witnesses the ferociousness of the provincial ‘s whipping of a Equus caballus and wakes up heaving, “ No! I could n’t make it, I could n’t make it! ” ( Dostoevsky 62 ) . This dream makes him inquiry and experience guilty about his intended action to kill Alyona. He still is discomforted by his unconditioned moral values, even when he insists on seting aside morality to go the Ubermensch. When he wakes up, the spasm environment of the coffin-like room he lives in, the airless atmosphere, and his changeless hectic province symbolize the intense guilt he feels. Finally, he is unable to manage all the guilt and fright, so he confesses to Sonya that he “ killed [ himself ] , non that old animal! ” ( Dostoevsky 435 ) . By acknowledging and repenting his forsaking of ethical motives, he stops believing that he has done nil incorrect. He even bows down to snog the Earth, which marks the start of his salvation. After his quest to promote himself to go the Ubermensch, he comes back down to the Earth where he joins the community of ordinary people, and no longer strives to go a Great Man ( Gibian ) . Extraordinary work forces, those who have the power to alter the class of history, have no respect for morality in their journey to accomplish their ends. Because he is consumed by guilt throughout the novel, Raskolnikov does non hold this characteristic. He demonstrates that it is impossible for a adult male to wholly disregard traditional ethical motives without being stricken by guilt subconsciously.
When Raskolnikov murders the pawnbroker, he believes that he has done nil incorrect and has become an extraordinary adult male. However, he shortly becomes filled with fright and guilt, which stop him from going the Ubermensch. Dostoevsky uses Raskolnikov to demo because of adult male ‘s moral values, it is impossible to go an Ubermensch.
Gibian, George. “ Traditional Symbolism in Crime and Punishment. ” JSTOR.org. Web. 31 Mar. 2011. & lt ; hypertext transfer protocol: //www.jstor.org.lib-proxy.fullerton.edu/ & gt ; .