Nechayev's Demons

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to Nechayev. Nechayev felt that Ivanov no longer benefitted his cause, and was a threat to his authority. Referring back to Nechayev’s “Catechism of the Revolutionist,” it was justifiable to discard Ivanov from the Russian Revolutionary Committee. Nechayev stated, “the organization had the moral right to take the life of any of its members” (Nechayev 72). Nechayev conspired with three other members to murder Ivanov by beating him, then throwing Ivanov carcass in a pond (Yarmolinsky 159). This act of terror was a direct result of Nechayev’s unwavering dedication to his endeavors, and from an outsiders’ perspective, is unjustifiable and unethical. Nechayev viewed his members’ lives as objects, and used their lives as means to his own end, to…show more content…
In Demons, Dostoevsky depicts Ivanov as Ivan Shatov, and Nechayev as Pyotr Stephanovich Verkhovensky. Pyotr Verkhovensky is developed as the mastermind behind a close-knit terrorist group, which he uses as a way to avoid getting his hands dirty throughout the novel. However, Verkhovensky does kill Shatov with his gun, but this is the only instance where he avoids a medium for his actions. The terrorist group becomes known as infamous troublemakers through setting villages on fire, crashing parties, and committing murders on behalf of Pyotr Verkhovensky. Shatov used to be a member of Verkhovensky’s organization but made an effort to dissociate himself from the group. Soon, Shatov’s wife gave birth to a son, who he adopted and had a complete change of heart, and wanted to devote his life to his family, instead of the revolutionary cause, and the objectification that accompanied being a revolutionist. Due to Shatov’s disassociation from the terrorist organization, Verkhovensky soon lost faith in Shatov, and began to plot Shatov’s murder. Pyotr Verkhovensky assigned the members of the terrorist group responsibilities in helping with the murder, to bind the organization with blood. Shatov was lured out into a park late at night, and was shot by Verkhovensky. The terrorist organization tied two large stones to the carcass and threw…show more content…
Days before Shatov’s murder, many of the members of the terrorist organization begin to have second thoughts about participating in the organization. However, Verkhovensky pays little attention to these members of the organization and tethers them together with “the blood they 've shed as though it were a knot” (Dostoevsky 386). Liputin was one of the first members to come forward about his concerns about the group. After the fete and fire, Verkhovensky gathers the members, and Liputin openly mentions that “to act in this way is humiliating and dangerous” (Dostoevsky 544), and that “it is suggested we act so everything fails” (Dostoevsky 554). Liputin begins to disagree with the “common cause” that the organization is serving, and realizes that what they are being forced to do is not morally sound. Closer to the eve of Shatov’s assassination, Liputin considers running away from Russia right after killing Shatov due to the consequences associated with murder, inferring that Liputin does not want to be associated with the organization after the murder. Liputin packs his bags and keeps his passport in his pocket for the quick exodus the night before Shatov’s murder. While watching Verkhovensky waste time eating a meat steak, Liputin thinks to himself: “if he could have killed Pyotr Stephanovich now, before tomorrow, he would
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