The truth that Dostoevsky puts in the mouth of the Grand Inquisitor is that humankind has never sought freedom, and never will. The secular religions of modern times tell us that humans yearn to be free; and it is true that they find restraint of any kind irksome. Yet it is rare that individuals value their freedom more than the comfort that comes with servility, and rarer still for whole peoples to do so.
She was thinkingfor, since she had been formed by literature, she could think in no other waythat all this had been described in Dickens,Tolstoy, Hugo, Dostoevsky, and a dozen others. All that noble and terrific indignation had done nothing, achieved nothing, the shout of anger from the nineteenth century might as well have been silentfor here came the file of prisoners, handcuffed two by two, and on their faces was that same immemorial look of patient, sardonic understanding.
Because Dickens and Dostoevsky and Woody Guthrie were telling their stories much better than I ever could, I decided to stick to my own mind.bob dylan
Dostoevsky believed that the gods of rationalism and materialist utilitarianism had joined in conspiracy against all other ethical systems. … The accumulation of capital, or the acquisition of money, are endeavors par excellence which establish a quantifiable goal: hence they are directly amenable to maximization formulae.john carroll
For Dostoevsky, Fourier is one of the industrious ant-hill engineers, busy, protected by the delusion that his goal, the will-ordered society, is the summation of all his desires.john carroll
Dostoevsky … impeaches Christ through the mouth of the Grand Inquisitor: ‘it was pitiless of thee to value man so highly’. This Christ has no answer to the world of politics, of rational action, of knowledge. He is utterly Nietzschean in his intention not to pity, but to respect.john carroll
You often feel about something in Shakespeare or Dostoevsky that nobody ever said such a thing, but it's just the sort of thing people would say if they could is more real, in some sense, than what people do say. If you have given your imagination free rein, let things go as far as they want to go, the world they made for themselves while you watched can have, for you and later watchers, a spontaneous finality.Randall Jarrell
I doubt whether the Revolution has, in essentials, changed Russia at all. Reading Gogol, or Dostoevsky for that matter, one realizes how completely the Soviet regime has fallen back on to, and perhaps invigorated, the old Russia. Certainly there is much more of Gogol and Dostoievsky in the regime than there is of Marx.Malcolm Muggeridge
When he looks back, the critic sees a eunuch's shadow. Who would be a critic if he could be a writer? Who would hammer out the subtlest insight into Dostoevsky if he could weld an inch of the Karamazovs, or argue the poise of Lawrence if he could shape the free gust of life in The Rainbow?George Steiner