2004
Volume 113 Number 4
  • ISSN: 0002-5275
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1244

Abstract

Abstract

Both philosophy and literature can be an investigation of human life and human culture: philosophical treatises as well as novels can be reflections on questions about the human and cultural condition. Philosophy and literature may complement each other in this respect: whereas philosophy is concerned with concepts, ideas and abstract reasoning, literature is able to show these as ‘flesh and blood’ in characters who find themselves in concrete existential situations. As an illustration of this view concerning the possible interactions between literature and philosophy, in this article I discuss Dostoevsky’s . I interpret this novella as a critique of the philosophy of rational egoism and its perception of man, and as a humanist plea for the all-important significance of human personality. In doing so, I aim to show that Dostoevsky’s is a highly interesting and enduringly relevant example of a literary work that explores philosophical themes.

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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Dostoevsky; humanism; personality; philosophy and literature; rational egoism; reason
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