So essential is Crime and Punishment (1866) to global literature and to our understanding of Russia that it was one of the three books Edward Snowden, while confined to the Moscow airport, was given to help him absorb the culture. In a work that best embodies the existential dilemmas of man's will to power, an impoverished student, sees himself as extraordinary and therefore free to commit crimes.
English translators have struggled with excessive literalism and no translation is felicitous to the literary nuances of the original prose. Now, Michael Katz addresses these challenges with new insights into the linguistic richness, the subtle tones and the cunning humour in this sparkling rendition of Fyodor Dostoevsky's masterpiece.
Fyodor Dostoevsky wrote The Brothers Karamazov, Crime and Punishment, The Idiot, and many other novels. Michael R. Katz, is C. V. Starr Professor of Russian and East European Studies at Middlebury College. He is the author of The Literary Ballad in Early Nineteenth-Century Russian Literature and Dreams and the Unconscious in Nineteenth-Century Russian Fiction. He has translated and edited the Norton Critical Editions of Fyodor Dostoevsky's Notes from Underground and Ivan Turgenev's Fathers and Children. He has also translated Alexander Herzen's Who Is to Blame?, N. G. Chernyshevsky's What Is to Be Done?, Dostoevsky's Devils, Druzhinin's Polinka Saks, Artsybashev's Sanin, and Jabotinsky's The Five. He lives in Cornwall, Vermont.