Study Guide

Crime and Punishment Part 2, Chapter 5

By Fyodor Dostoevsky

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Part 2, Chapter 5

  • The mysterious stranger is a bit stiff, "no longer young," and looks amazed to have found himself in such a foul little room.
  • He asks for "Rodion Romanovitch Raskolnikov, a student, or formerly a student?"
  • Razumihin points to the couch. Raskolnikov snaps at the man irritably.
  • It's Luzhin, Dounia's fiancé. He introduces himself to Raskolnikov, who stares at him blankly.
  • Luzhin says he thought Raskolnikov would know about him from a letter.
  • Razumihin, yawning, invites Luzhin in and tells him that Raskolnikov has been sick for the past five days and out of his head for three (at least).
  • Finding a place to sit in the crowded room, Luzhin again brings up the letter.
  • "I know, I know!" Raskolnikov tells him. "So you are the fiancé? I know, and that's enough!" and then zones out, staring at Luzhin.
  • Raskolnikov admires his clothes (including the light purple gloves and the tie with pink stripes). He thinks he looks pretty good. He'd obviously bought new clothes to impress Dounia, and he has a nice beard and a nice hairdo. He looks younger than 45.
  • In spite of his good looks, there is something not quite right.
  • Luzhin says he's sorry Raskolnikov is sick, then tells him that his mother and sister should arrive any moment and that he's found them rooms to stay in.
  • When he says where the rooms are located, Razumihin says the place is a complete dump.
  • Luzhin defends the rooms and says he's staying with a friend, Andrey Semyonovitch Lebeziatnikov.
  • When Raskolnikov gets excited over the name, Luzhin asks if he knows him.
  • Raskolnikov says yes, then no.
  • (He can't quite rememberhe should see Part I, Chapter One. Andrey Semyonovitch is the man who beat Marmeladov's wife, and maybe has something to do with Sonia becoming a prostitute.)
  • Luzhin enjoys, as we heard about in the letter, looking at things from the perspective of "the younger generation," which is sensible and realistic.
  • Razumihin says that no, the younger generation has no sense at all, that they are all about ideas, even though they mean well.
  • Luzhin defends his statements, saying that undeniable "progress" has been made, that there is less "prejudice" these days.
  • He says that, in the old days, people believed that a person needed to care for his neighbors, and so nobody had anything.
  • But, if each person takes care of himself, everyone will have enough. (That's the simplified version.)
  • Razumihin says he's not smart enough to follow and begs Luzhin to stop, saying he understands that Luzhin is trying to make a good impression and all, but that's enough.
  • As Luzhin is about to leave, Zossimov and Razumihin reconvene their amateur detective session. They agree that the killer was a client. The pawnbroker's clients are being questioned.
  • This piques Raskolnikov's interest, but Razumihin pushes him out of the conversation.
  • Zossimov thinks the killer is a professional criminal; Razumihin thinks the opposite.
  • Luzhin has heard about the murder, too.
  • He thinks that if the killer was a client, he was a rich one. According to him, poor people have nothing to pawn.
  • Now, Raskolnikov pipes in. He says that the murder is Luzhin's theory put into action, that if each person thinks only of himself, then even murder is allowable.
  • Luzhin says he was just talking economic theory, which has, according to him, nothing to do with murder.
  • Raskolnikov asks Luzhin if he really said he wanted to marry a poor girl so she would be totally dependent on him.
  • Luzhin denies that's what he meant. Then, he accuses Raskolnikov's mom of being out to get him. (Uh-oh.)
  • Raskolnikov says that if Luzhin ever talks about his mom again, he'll toss him down the stairs.
  • Even Razumihin is alarmed, and Luzhin says he knows that Raskolnikov can't blame his rude behavior on being sick.
  • Raskolnikov tells Luzhin, "Go to hell!" but he's already gone.
  • Razumihin starts to scold Raskolnikov, but he throws a fit and tells his friend to beat it.
  • So Razumihin leaves, but notes that the only thing Raskolnikov is interested in is the murder.
  • Razumihin is going to hang out with Pashenka, and use Nastasya to spy on Raskolnikov.
  • Speaking of Nastasya, here she is now, with tea.
  • Raskolnikov whines that he's tired and needs to be alone, so she leaves.

Crime and Punishment Part 2, Chapter 5 Study Group

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