Study Guide

The Brothers Karamazov Book 11, Chapter 1

By Fyodor Dostoevsky

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Book 11, Chapter 1

At Grushenka's

  • Alyosha heads off to visit Grushenka, who is in quite a state. After Mitya's (Mitya is a nickname for Dmitri) arrest, Grushenka was sick for almost five weeks. Now, two months later, she's doing better, although she's lost some weight.
  • Incidentally, she has let the old man Maximov stay on with her out of charity, and he entertains her with funny stories.
  • We learn that the trial is the next day.
  • Grushenka has just returned from a visit to Mitya, where they had a terrible argument over Grushenka's former Polish lover. It seems that now the Poles are living in incredible poverty, and Grushenka sends them small sums of money from time to time out of pity. Right before she went to visit Mitya that day, she had stopped by the Poles', where her former lover had tried to seduce her with music. Grushenka thought it was funny; Mitya did not.
  • Grushenka has her own cause for jealousy. She believes Mitya is back in love with Katerina, who's hired a fancy Moscow doctor to diagnose Mitya as insane. The thinking here is that since the whole town thinks Mitya is guilty, it might be better to argue that he's insane.
  • Ivan, to Alyosha's surprise, has also visited Dmitri, who has told Grushenka that he and Ivan have a secret.
  • Alyosha promises to find out their secret for Grushenka, and leaves.

The Brothers Karamazov Book 11, Chapter 1 Study Group

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