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Imperfect Conscience in Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment Essay

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Crime and Punishment:  Imperfect Conscience              

A highly educated individual, avoiding the hardships of society while pondering the possibility of great wealth, Raskolnikov, in Fyodor Dostoevsky's "Crime and Punishment," frustrated with his immoral actions, suffers from an abrupt physical and mental breakdown after brutally mutilating a wicked pawnbroker. After this soul-scarring incident, the initial feelings of success in completing his mission quickly changes once he realizes possible flaws in his, otherwise considered, perfect murder. Raskolnikov's imperfect conscience finally comes to an emotional awakening once his saint, Sonya, an unintelligent prostitute, brings him the love, sensitivity, and inner serenity to help him confess to the murder he so coldly commits.

After ruminating on the pessimistic consequences of this crude and selfish murder, a change in conscience comes over Raskolnikov. Once he understands the reality of the matter does he actually suffer a breakdown. Though he commits a very serious crime, Raskolnikov still refuses to believe its contin...


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