Gender Characters In Fyodor Dostoyevsky's Crime And Punishment

963 Words4 Pages
For the longevity of world history, women have been forced to take on many roles and occupations. In recent years, women have broken standard gender roles and crafted a life that is one hundred percent their own. However, in Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment, published in 1866, women are making lives of their own and becoming the providers in their households. Dostoyevsky crafted female characters that make sacrifices to provide for their loved ones. Dostoyevsky’s characters, especially Sonia, have broken many gender roles, and the men of the story have become dependent on Sonia due to her actions.
From the beginning of the story, we were aware that Sonia was quite the selfless character. In Marmeladov’s drunken rant to Raskolnikov,
…show more content…
The first time Raskolnikov visits Sonia at her apartment, he is quite rude to her. After he murdered Lizaveta and Aliona, he became a miserable criminal, and that is what he labeled Sonia as. He said, “You live in this muck that you hate… Wouldn’t it have been better, a thousand times more ‘right’--and more clever, too--if you’d gone and jumped in the river and ended everything at once!” (315). Sonia thought many times of killing herself, so she understood his cruel suggestion. However, this may seem contradictory of the previous statement of his dependency on Sonia, but it appears this was Raskolnikov finding an outlet for the misery he created for himself, and Sonia knew that Raskolnikov was “terribly, infinitely unhappy” (321). It also seems as if this was the point in Sonia and Raskolnikov’s relationship where they grew closer because this was when Raskolnikov declared, “You are all I have now. Let’s go together” (321). After only days of knowing each other, Raskolnikov found a sense of need for Sonia in his life; it may have been a selfish need, but it also seemed as if Raskolnikov was looking out for Sonia when he said, “Haven’t you done the same? You, too, have transgressed…. If you’re alone, you’ll go out of your mind, like me. You behave as though you’re mad already, so we have to go the same way together” (322). Transgression is one thing Sonia and Raskolnikov certainly have in common,…show more content…
This was Sonia’s statement that would stick with Raskolnikov until the day of his legal confession; Sonia wanted Raskolnikov to turn himself in, but, at first, he wouldn’t. He believed there was not enough evidence to convict anyone, so a confession was virtually pointless. However despite that belief, he still asked Sonia, “Will you come visit me in jail when I’m there?” (409). This seems to show that Raskolnikov needed that promise before he was ever caught or before he ever confessed because he, at least subconsciously, knew he wanted and needed visitation from her; he said nothing about Dunia or his mother coming to visit after they found out in such a way they were not frightened. Only Sonia. Before Raskolnikov went to confess, Sonia was the last person he saw, at her house and at the police station. He had gone to her apartment to inform her of his future confession, and she was prepared to go with him. However, he denied her that chance, but she went anyways in secret. Once he walked out of the police station after avoiding his confession, he saw her. She stood “numb and deathly pale; and she looked at him with a wild look…. A ghastly, lost smile forced its way to his lips. He stood there and grinned. Then he turned back upstairs to the station” (510). It is not explicitly stated, but it seems as if Dostoyevsky wrote this exchange to show that Sonia positively influenced Raskolnikov and that seeing Sonia

More about Gender Characters In Fyodor Dostoyevsky's Crime And Punishment

Open Document