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Die Heuning Pot Literature Guide
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Quotes

Quote #1

For that's Katerina Ivanovna's character, and when children cry, even from hunger, she falls to beating them at once. (1.2.21)

Even though we get dozens of lines like these about Katerina, she remains a somewhat sympathetic character. Part of this is because her kids, and a few others, remain loyal to her and seem to love her. Her abuse is considered a symptom of her illness and her poverty and, thus, not entirely monstrous.

Quote #2

[Katerina:] "Mercy on us, can he have drunk it all? There were twelve silver roubles left in the chest!" and in a fury she seized him by the hair and dragged him into the room. (1.3.49)

Many of the violent moments in the novel involve Katerina. Sure, she has a right to be mad about the stolen money, but it's painful to read about her treatment of her husband nonetheless. It's also darkly comic. We are angry with Marmeladov for not being stronger and we want something to wake him to the reality of it. He himself thinks the hair-pulling might help.

Quote #3

The blow fell; the mare staggered, sank back, tried to pull, but the bar fell again with a swinging blow on her back and she fell on the ground like a log. (1.5.45)

This is from Raskolnikov's famous horse dream. When he wakes from it, he decides not to kill Alyona. In his mind, for a moment, he thinks of her as his innocent victim and wants to save her from himself.

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