Brothers Karamazov – The Evidence of the Witnesses

The death of Fyodor Karamazov has fallen upon Dmitri’s world, whether or not it was him is still unclear to the reader, who wants to believe in Dmitri’s nobility.  During the interrogation of witnesses that the inspector is questioning, the evidence builds against our antagonist, this soul whom, at least I have grown fond of despite his scroundalness.  Weariness settles on Dimitri and suddenly the reader is no longer in the present but is transported into a world that in a sense is timeless, is not of reality: the world of Dreams.

Now dreams are usually a representation of someone’s presence, and thus when placed in a novel can usually share something but about the world in which the dreamer is living in.  Dreams are basically the brain trying to make sense of the world surrounding the person/ character dreaming.  Now Dimitri the entire novel has been living in a state of chaos, much of his actions do not make sense to the readers, he runs like a madman looking for his lost head.  However, so do many other people in the novel are affected by the place they are living in and the dream that Dimitri has post-interrogation, is represented of the real world poverty in the novel.  Here we have a man who though struck with the misfortune of being poor and yet has still has a lot of fortune in his life.  Somewhere in his section, the narrator mentions that all of his life that Dimitri did not work for the money he was given and thus in his search of money it did not occur to him how to work for the money that he needed.  In comparison to those in his dream he does not to be as desperate in condition then them and yet in Dimitri’s mind it serves as a condition, a space that is representative of his mental state.  And yet, the concern displayed in the dream is Dimitri worrying about others.  Is the dream then meant to compare his desperation to those of these people or is it do display that in the time of his own trials he is mostly concerned about others thus adding to his nobility? Or is it both?

In the dream we are hit with people who live in “…black, black huts and half of the huts are burnt, just charred beams sticking up…. and peasant women standing along the road… wasted, their faces, sort of brown in color … breasts all dried up..” and babies who are bare-armed and hungry.”  These people are poverty stricken with the kind of life that even Dimitri cannot comprehend.  They are sick, which is probably due to the fact that big industry that was growing in that time, was poisoning the earth around poorer neighborhoods.  Those who are poor are not only often forced to live in neighborhoods that are bad for human health but also have to work for the companies that make their environment black and burned.  Thus it is like living in a world that makes no sense, one that is constantly leading towards one’s destruction.  This scene thus spurs issues of environmental injustice to a modern reader.

“And it seems to Mitya that he is cold, it is the beginning of November, and snow is pouring down in big, wet flakes that melt as soon as they touch the ground.”  Dimitri then is like the snow,  has been falling like snow that does not stick.  He is unsure and is falling into a state of uncertainty.  Like Dante’s pit of hell, himself and the world surrounding is black or frozen.  The question then becomes on whether or not spring will arrive for the villain of hour.

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