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Synopsis

Crime and Punishment is one of the most important novels of the nineteenth century. It is the story of a murder committed on principle, of a killer who wishes to set himself outside and above society. It is marked by Dostoevsky's own harrowing experience in penal servitude, and yet contains moments of wild humour. This new edition of the authoritative and readable Coulson translation, comes with a challenging new introduction and notes which bring out many of the novel's most important - and difficult - aspects. - ;Crime and Punishment is the story of a murder committed on principle, of a killer who wishes by his action to set himself outside and above society. A novel of fearful tension, physical, and psychological, it is pervaded by Dostoevsky's sinister evocation of St Petersburg, yet in the life of its gloomy tenements and drink-shops provides moments of wild humour. Crime and Punishment was marked by Dostoevsky's own harrowing experiences. He had himself undergone interrogation and trial, and was condemned to death, a sentence commuted to penal servitude. In prison he was particularly impressed by one hardened murderer who seemed to have attained a spiritual equilibrium beyond good and evil: yet witnessing the misery of other convicts also engendered in Dostoevsky a belief in the Christian idea of salvation through suffering. -

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