Theme Of Dreams In Crime And Punishment

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Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis once wrote, “The interpretation of dreams is the royal road to a knowledge of the unconscious activities of the mind” (Freud 1). This remark appears in Freud’s work named, “The Interpretation of Dreams”. Freud’s comment demonstrates that because dreams are such an unconscious activity, they give a direct intuition into the workings of the senseless mind, meaning that a dream shows a person’s unrestrained feeling that an individual cannot show to others easily. The idea that dreams can give a direct insight into a person’s mind is seen clearly throughout Fyodor Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. Dostoevsky uses dreams as a symbol to portray the internal conflicts of Raskolnikov through his four dreams.…show more content…
As they walk, both of them noticed a drunken man named Mikolka, and a group of drunken friends beating his mare to death. This dream foreshadowed the murder of Alyona Ivanova. The mare in the dream symbolized Alyona while the young Raskolnikov and Mikolka portray the conflicting halves of Raskolnikov. The seven year old showed Raskolnikov’s guiltless and warmhearted side, this side reveals that Raskolnikov is able to show compassion and actually feels that he does not want to commit the murder. On the contrary, Mikolka represents the side with having no emotion towards the murder. Mikolka felt the horse was useless and is not doing any good to society and the people around, he also felt that society would benefit from the horse’s death. The exact same way that Raskolnikov feels about Alyona. Raskolnikov felt that people living in poverty would benefit from Alyona’s death. After completing the murder, Raskolnikov begins to have more dreams, this time dealing with guilt. In the second dream, Petrovich is beating the landlady outside of Raskolnikov’s apartment. In fact the beating is so brutal that Raskolnikov states that, “Good God, what a scream! Such unnatural sounds, such howling, wailing, grinding, tears, blows and curses he had never heard” (Dostoevsky 102). The cruelty when Raskolnikov murdered the pawnbroker is about the same as Petrovich in his dream; the only difference is that…show more content…
Raskolnikov returns to the pawnbroker’s apartment where he murdered Alyona and her sister, Lizaveta. He then sees a coat that seems out of place and walked towards it. He removes the coat and sees the face of Alyona, the pawnbroker. Surprised, he smashes her head with the axe once and again but she does not move. Out of fear, he strikes her over and over with the axe, as he had done in the reality but in the dream, she did not die instead she laughs at him instead of crying. Raskolnikov puzzled and frustrated attempts to escape, but suddenly the apartment is filled with laughing people and he cannot move. Surrounded by laughter, Raskolnikov realizes that by murdering Alyona, he will always feel the guilt and that he will never be free because his mind will always hold him as a prisoner. Raskolnikov is unconsciously seeking punishment for his crime, he feels guilty more so because his perfect planned murder killed an innocent woman. After he confesses his murder, he suffers in prison and he has his fourth dream. Raskolnikov is still convinced that his act of murdering the pawnbroker and the sister was merely just an error and he becomes very ill. In his fourth dream, a plague from microscopic bugs attacks the country. The bug infected people, making them go insane and made them believe that they are the most intelligent being in the world. As everyone thought

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