Dostoyevsky Summer Impressions

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In Winter Notes on Summer Impressions, Dostoyevsky comes into contact with both the Catholic and Protestant branches of Christianity for the first time and, based on his own experience, is able to make judgments about them. He sees the results of the splintering of Western Christianity as utterly negative and a departure from the unification of humanity. In Dostoyevsky’s opinion, the Protestants, or Anglicans, in England are “proud and rich…[have] untroubled conscience[s]… pompously and seriously believ[ing] in their own solidly moral virtues and their right to preach a staid and complacent morality” (Dostoyevsky 42). They do not allow the poor in their churches but the ministers and bishops “live in wealthy parishes and dioceses” all the while “forget[ing] the million …show more content…

It “distribute[s] them free, thrust[s] them into people’s hands, press them on people,” so instead of ignoring the poor, the Catholic church makes an extreme effort to impose their religious beliefs upon anyone and everyone who will listen (Dostoyevsky 41). Dostoyevsky expands upon this idea even further by saying that “a catholic priest would…insinuate himself into a poor workman’s family… [and] feed them all, provide clothes and warmth for them, give treatment to the sick man, buy medicine for him, become a friend of the family and finally convert them all to the Catholic faith” (Dostoyevsky 41). After observing, he concludes that Catholic priests are manipulative and use their charity to convert the unsuspecting poor into converting. They do not actually care anymore about the people in their city than the Anglicans; they are only concerned with the numbers of people they are converting and disguising deception with charity. This also prevents unity within the church because the poor are not necessarily unintelligent and can see exactly what the Catholic church is doing to influence

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