ENGL 371
The Brothers Karamazov Spring 2019
Division I Writing Skills
Cross-listed ENGL 371 / COMP 331 / RUSS 331
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Widely hailed as one of the greatest novels ever written, Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov contains a series of enigmas, not the least of which is precisely who murdered the Karamazov father. In addition to exploring the shared guilt of all four of the brothers Karamazov in the crime of patricide, Dostoevsky poses the most probing questions of his day: Are families tied together merely by blood or by deeper spiritual bonds? Is religious faith possible in an age of reason, science, and technology? Can man’s earthly laws ever carry out divine justice? Is humanity prepared to bear the burden of responsibility that comes with freedom? This tutorial will spend an entire semester exploring Dostoevsky’s masterwork, and we will read a variety of secondary sources alongside The Brothers Karamazov, including history, philosophy, and literary theory. Our goal will be to understand Dostoevsky’s answers to these so-called “accursed questions” through the unique artistic form of The Brothers Karamazov.
The Class: Type: tutorial
Limit: 10
Expected: 10
Class#: 3743
Grading: no pass/fail option, no fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: evaluation will be based on completion of weekly reading and writing assignments, as well as active engagement during tutorial sessions
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis; not available for the fifth course option
Prerequisites: at least one 200-level literature class
Enrollment Preferences: students majoring or considering a major in Russian, Comparative Literature, or English
Distributions: Division I Writing Skills
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
ENGL 371 Division I COMP 331 Division I RUSS 331 Division I
Attributes: JLST Interdepartmental Electives

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