Actually I read this extraordinary book a long time ago. It was back in those days when I realised that my knowledge was so impoverished I had to do something about it; so, I read the classics; the trouble is I have forgotten everything I once knew about ‘The Brothers Karamazov’. However, I happened to see a short programme in which esteemed authors were mentioning books that they might read during these restricted times. Margaret Atwood had never read Dostoyevsky’s ‘The Brothers Karamazov.’ She rather relished the fact that, by all accounts, it featured ‘bad behaviour’!
I decided, therefore, that I had better re-read this great novel. Today, I retrieved it from one of my bookshelves. I dusted it off and looked at the cover. I opened the book. I began reading.
(The painting featured on the cover of the book shows a detail from, ‘The rejected confession’ by Ilya Repin.)
1 thought on “When Margaret Atwood speaks …”
Dear Rob Well done Good to hear from you I think you included Karamazov in your chapter on leadership in literature, which I once edited with Jonathan Gosling. I will check it out. Heat wave here. All very puzzling! In N Devon life is much as normal, and I am walking by the sea and on Dartmoor and doing tai chi and pilates via ZOOM. A charmed life? Not sure. Not impressed with national decision-making a la Cummings…. Best wishes and stay well Peter PS am reading George Orwell, again. Poor early novels, and Burmese Days is really depressing. Why make your main character an anglo-Indian businessman (as the term was used then) who hates Burma, more or less, despises his fellow expatriates because they won’t talk to him about literature or learn Burmese, falls in love with the wrong girl, suffers unnecessarily because of the perceived stigma of his birthmark, and eventually kills himself after shooting his dog – the only character portrayed with understanding? And Dr Veraswamy is a caricature! Oh, dear, this has really got to me! Will do a little play about Orwell, if I can! Have started with a scene when he joined the POUM in Barcelona, which I may have sent to you previously…. PPS Should I bring in Lorca? Grossly over-ambitious on my part!