Accused of political subversion as a young man, Fyodor Dostoyevsky was sentenced to four years of hard labor at a Siberian prison camp -- a horrifying experience from which he developed this astounding semi-autobiographical memoir of a man condemned to ten years of servitude for murdering his wife. As with a number of the author's other works, this profoundly influential novel brilliantly explores his characters' thoughts while probing the depths of the human soul. Describing in relentless detail the physical and mental suffering of the convicts, Dostoyevsky's character never loses faith in human qualities and the goodness of man. A haunting and remarkable work filled with wonder and resignation, The House of The Dead ranks among the Russian novelist's greatest masterpieces.
Of this powerful autobiographical novel, Tolstoy wrote, "I know no better book in all modern literature."
About the Author
Moscow-born Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoyevsky (1821-1881) served time in a convict prison for his political alliances, and in his later years his passion for gambling led him deeply into debt. His novels include The Devils and The Brothers Karamazov. Ronald Wilks has translated numerous volumes for the Classics, including most recently Chekhov's stories and forthcoming editions of Tolstoy's stories, and Gogol's stories and plays.
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Comments about The House of the Dead:
I have read this book 3 times over 30 years.
It give a first hand account of what it was like to be sentenced to a Russian Gulag in the late 1800.
Dostoyevsky describes in detail every day life in such a brutal environment.
Those prisoners with no access to money survived on Cabbage soup infested with cockroaches and dry bread.. Fetters were worn 24 hours a day. They slept on wooden plank beds with only a thick coat as bedding. In each barrack there were 30 prisoners. The toilet was a night pail in the corner. Imagine the smell.
Those prisoners who committed murder were given 4000 lashes. Half to start with, then given time to heal. The other 2000 lashes were then inflicted on them. Many prisoners died from these beatings.
Dostoyevsky described his first impressions thus, In Summer, intolerable closeness, in Winter, unendurable cold, - 30 degrees. All the floors were rotten. Filth on the floor an inch deep. "We were packed in like Herrings in a barrel. There was no room to turn around. From dawn to dusk it was impossible not to behave like pigs. Fleas, lice and black beetles by the bushel. "
I fail to understand why this book has not been made into a movie.
Do yourself a favour and read this book for an insight in mans inhumanity to man.
|The House of the Dead||p. 5|
|First Impressions||p. 16|
|First Impressions||p. 30|
|First Impressions||p. 42|
|The First Month||p. 55|
|The First Month||p. 67|
|New Acquaintances--Petrov||p. 78|
|Determined Characters--Lutchka||p. 88|
|Isay Fomitch--The Bath-House--Baklushin's Story||p. 93|
|The Theatricals||p. 120|
|The Hospital||p. 137|
|The Hospital||p. 148|
|The Hospital||p. 160|
|Akulka's Husband (A Story)||p. 174|
|Summer Time||p. 183|
|Prison Animals||p. 196|
|The Complaint||p. 207|
|An Escape||p. 232|
|How I Left Prison||p. 244|
|Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.|
Series: Penguin Classics
For Ages: 18+ years old
Number Of Pages: 368
Published: April 1986
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.9 x 13.0 x 1.8
Weight (kg): 0.28
Edition Number: 1